Determined to repeat the success of their previous partnership, Ken Adams and Mike Wilde formed Life Build Solutions soon after the break-up of Benson in late 2004. Since 2005, they have rebuilt their team and re-established a thriving, independent regional contracting business which, at current growth rates, looks set to match the success of their time together heading up Bensons profitable Northern Home Counties (NHC) division, which was snapped up by Bluestone amidst the collapse of the Benson Group.
As it approaches its third year of audited accounts, due in February, Life Build Solutions has lifted its turnover from less than £1m in its first year, to just under £4m in year two and now over £8m at the end of 2007, with at least £6m of work secured for 2008. The founding directors believe this is due to replicating the successful formula they previously adopted: a passion for forging long-term relationships with clients by consistently achieving industry-beating results “delivering a quality product, not only on budget but ahead of time as the norm” As managing director at NHC from start-up, Ken Adams, supported by Mike Wilde as construction director, had four golden years, hitting £18m annual turnover, with nearly two-thirds of jobs handed over early and the remainder on time, resulting in above-average profit margins and a long list of repeat clients. As our company name suggests, our goal is to provide a level of service once again that sets us apart and fosters lifelong relationships with clients, said Ken Adams. Mike Wilde added: We all share a conviction about doing things differently here “listening to clients, fulfilling their needs and expectations; being proactive and problem-solving, not looking for excuses”
The company operates in both public and private sectors, carrying out projects up to £8m in commercial, industrial, education, healthcare, housing, government, community and general work, either by negotiation/partnering, two stage, traditional or design and build. Its area of operation includes Central, North & West London, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Surrey. It is gaining a growing list of repeat business, including the likes of housing associations Hightown Praetorian and London & Quadrant; London-based County Estates Management; Berkhamsted Collegiate School and even the renowned Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire. To date, its order books range from retail and commercial fit-outs to school sports halls and extensions; from office refurbishment to industrial warehousing. With backing from two shareholding partners, property and construction entrepreneurs Bob Morton and Ken Wilkins, the founding directors have set out a five-year plan to build a £20m business. But they resist any long-term ambitions to go national: We prefer to keep to a close-knit regional organisation and stay close to our clients.