"If you spend 60 per cent of your time at work you need to enjoy it and companies need to stimulate their people. Stimulation and education can only be a good thing for the individuals concerned and the overall business."
Nick said Christeyns product lines can be counted in thousands as each core product line has a multitude of variations.
He is looking to expand the business further with potential future acquisitions and has also discussed prospects for extending the Rutland Street site through acquiring some adjacent land with senior Bradford Council officials.
The 2.1 million acquisition of Alex Reid in Leicester, a former subsidiary of the Johnson Cleaning group, which supplies chemicals, consumables and machines to the dry cleaning sector, strengthened Christeyns' position in the textile care sector. Nick is looking to get the company's products into export markets, and recently visited the Middle East where he is optimistic about prospects for sales.
A successful 2013 saw the business land the largest ever single contract in its history, worth around 20 million over five years, with a leading laundering group; Scotland's largest commercial laundry extended Omega Speedmaster 57 Co-axial Chronograph
And there's certainly an air of commitment and satisfaction with their lot among the people I met at Christeyns UK in Rutland Street and nearby sites in Bowling. From the newest apprentice to the boss, it is seen as a good place to work.
Christeyns UK's Bradford laboratory is constantly developing new products often driven by changing legislation requiring changes to specifications or completely new products as well as being responsible for quality control and the development of greener sustainable products increasingly required by customers.
"I get a buzz every morning coming to work. As managers and leaders of companies we are obligated to employ people, look after them and ensure they feel motivated and encouraged to do a good job. In the last few years we have culturally shifted to become more competitive.
Christeyns profits from good product and employee welfare From Bradford Telegraph and Argus
The main products made in Bradford are powders and liquids for the commercial laundry and construction sectors. Hotels and the NHS are also key markets.
One concern Nick has is that Christeyns needs more younger workers. The majority of people are in their mid 40s. So, he has recruited the firm's first manufacturing apprentice and is looking to add another couple this year.
The fruit is only part of an overall culture which focuses on employee welfare and engagement and helped the Belgian owned business achieve record turnover and profits in 2013.
Christeyns UK, which traded as Oils Soaps until 1998, is a business that can trace its roots back to 1874. Following two acquisitions in 2012, the business has doubled in size and has a turnover of around 45 million and employs 230 people in the UK in Bradford, Leicester and Warrington.
for the next 12 months is to continue to maximise the opportunities the two acquisitions have presented us with, taking advantage of increased purchasing power and improved logistics, as well as lessons of best practice from each acquired business. We also expect to see a significant level of organic growth as a result of new contracts wins.
"We have very low employee turnover, Average service time is 15 years and Christeyns is a firm very few people want to leave."
Providing fresh fruit to workers may seem like a small gesture. But at a Bradford chemicals and detergents plant it is integral to a culture of enjoying work.
He spent 26 years with the Flender engineering business, later Siemens and then based at Thornbury, where he was managing director.
Joining Christeyns from a mechanical Omega Seamaster Gmt Leather Strap
Christeyns UK has achieved the Investors in People silver award and while not setting out to get the gong, Nick said the process had helped to focus and develop its people processes and the goal is to get a gold award this year.
engineering background enabled Nick to achieve his original ambition to become a chemical engineer.
Nick recently spelled out his commitment to developing Christeyns' Bradford operations. He said: "The plan Omega Black Art
The Ghent based group employs a total of 500 people at sites in Belgium, France, the Czech Republic and Italy with subsidiaries in 20 countries.
Nick said: "We pay the rate for the job but if you give people extra things like fresh fruit, neck and shoulder massages and have a policy of genuine engagement, it's good for the business.
Nick is fully behind Bradford's Producer City initiative and is keen to play his part. Christeyns is also getting involved with regional tourism body Welcome to Yorkshire to produce hospitality kits for the Tour de France in July.
It provides youngsters with a chance to train and work in all parts of the business and, if appropriate, move onto college or even university studies.
"We maintain our commitment to keeping our manufacturing sites at Rutland Street and Eastwood Street and in 2014 we are embarking on a programme of improving our manufacturing capabilities to maximise further growth next year and beyond."
Buying a 50 per cent stake in Warrington based Klenzan, also in 2012, enabled Christeyns to break further into manufacturing for the food, dairy and brewing sectors These two operations continue to run from their existing bases and retain their names, Nick said the approach mirrors that of the Christeyns Group's private owners who give local management the freedom and flexibility to develop the culture and operations.
Workers are offered monthly neck and shoulder massages, regular opinion surveys in which they are encouraged to submit honest views, one to one sessions as well as regular discussions about processes and procedures, including health and safety issues.
The engineering division works mainly at customers' sites Omega Seamaster On Nato installing and maintaining the efficiency of essential equipment using Christeyns products in their processes. The operation has swallowed up large amounts of investment in recent years in addition to around 500,000 of investment in equipment and training at the three Bradford operating sites.
its contract for another five years; and the construction division through which Christeyns supplies a range of chemicals used in various processes grew by more than 20 per cent. In fact, the construction business continued to grow despite the recession.
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