A LOCAL company is benefiting from an association with a business support agency that offers a wide range of practical, free advice and support on how to start up and develop a business.

Kenny Lindsay, from Moffat, has gone from being a man with a van and a rough plan, to the head of a rapidly expanding business employing 27 people all over the UK, with a host of high-profile clients. Working with Business Gateway has meant that he is better prepared to take his company forward.

When Kenny, 50, left school at 16, he never dreamed that one day he’d be running his own company. After a motor mechanic apprenticeship, he began working as a steel erector in the oil industry, building huge oil storage tanks all over the UK, Ireland and Norway.

Within 15 years, he went from working as a labourer to running sites. When a chance came up to set up his own company in 2004, he got a van, a couple of workers and began winning contracts up and down the country. Clients have included the British Government, Ministry of Defence and major oil companies, including BP and Shell.

Integrity Support Solutions Group Ltd incorporates two companies: Storage Solutions, which specialises in large-scale bulk storage tank construction and repair for the oil industry; and Industrial Safety Solutions, which works with companies of all kinds and sizes on delivering a safer workplace.

Storage Solutions is known for its highly-specialised work in high risk environments, and Kenny says: “We can come up with bespoke solutions for all kinds of situations. We don’t have a templated way of working. Each job is treated with an individual approach because of the different hazards involved.”

As its reputation grew, the company became busier, and the business expanded, which meant Kenny became increasingly office-based, and had to learn more about business. In 2018, he graduated from the University of the West of Scotland in Dumfries with a business degree, and has been working with Business Gateway on his forward planning and strategy for the future.

Meanwhile, he spotted a chance to branch out into health and safety, developing his own team of occupational hygienists, who go into companies to detect and monitor potential hazards, and offer solutions.

Projects range from one-man joinery businesses to multi-national construction firm Laing O’Rourke, and London’s Crossrail project, and the hazards they address include anything from fumes, noise and vibration, to bacteria and pollution.

In its construction work, Kenny’s firm specialises in working in hazardous environments: “Safety is a huge part of what we do, and we were using occupational hygienists a lot to make sure our workforce was safe, so I thought: why not start up in that area ourselves?”

With teams working all over the country, Kenny has been able to stay based in Moffat, which he says is great for its communication links. And he has managed to gain the necessary business expertise on his doorstep.

“If I’d known, before I started, what I know now, I probably wouldn’t have done it,” he laughs. “It’s been really hard work at times, but everyone at UWS has been fantastic, and Business Gateway has been a great source of support and information on everything from funding to business development.

“I’m hoping to add another strand to the business, in engineering support, and to expand the service we offer with health and safety support, so Business Gateway is helping me plan, organise and look ahead.”

Business Gateway Team Leader, Allan McNaught, says: “We have an excellent, ongoing working relationship with Kenny and his team. The development and diversity of their offerings allows us to utilise several support products to assist in getting the business hitting its milestones.

“They are a great showcase for the styles of businesses we support, not just in Moffat but throughout the region.”

From start-up to growth, expansion and exporting, Business Gateway can help you.  Find them on: www.bgateway.com, or call 01387 808738.

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