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Rishton office interiors firm celebrates 30 years
5:07pm Monday 11th March 2013 in News
WITNESSING her father’s despair at a failed family business venture provided the kick-start for female entrepreneur Bev Mercer to launch one of Rishton’s most successful companies.
Bevlan Office Interiors, based at York Mill, Livesey Street, is celebrat-ing 30 years in business, and the company is a living testament that strong business ethics will prevail.
Back in 1983, Bev’s father, Alan, had suffered the loss of an office supplies company started by his own father, and was left owing the bank £20,000 from a director’s guarantee taken out in an attempt to save the company.
Despite calling on many colleagues, Alan found the job market an inhosp-itable place, with the only job on offer being a position selling on commission only. Driven by her father’s frustr-ation, his daughter decided to take action.
Bev, then aged 20, went out and found a small business unit and together they set up a company selling used office desks. “Those first few years were really tough. Although the bus-iness was profitable from the start, we had the bank to pay back and other creditors. But both my father and I have very strong morals and business ethics.
“We were both absolutely deter-mined to face the future with a clean slate,” recalled Bev.
Over the years Bevlan has progr-essed from selling desks, chairs and filing cabinets, to offering a complete interior design package for offices, together with AutoCAD drawings, advice on colour schemes, and ergon-omic seating assessments.
Today, Bevlan’s large and stylish showroom boasts some of the most prestigious designer office furniture.
The mill is owned by Bevlan, and the business supports a team of 10, servicing clients throughout the UK, ranging from North Wales Police to the Football League.
Alan retired about eight years ago, but Bev is supported by a long-standing team. Finance director Wendy West, who has worked with Bevlan for more than 20 years, said: “The great thing about this business is its transp-arency. Our business ethics are simple – we operate within our means – and this approach has proved our salv-ation during tough times when many of our competitors haven’t survived.”