Tell us about your company?
The company is called Blockwalls and is the trading name of Virtus Concrete Solutions. We are based in Bromborough and manufacture concrete Lego styled blocks for the construction of retaining walls, flood defence walls and recycling material bay. We have a full design service that value engineers each retaining wall to the project delivering effective solutions to civil engineering problems. The number of possibilities on how to use concrete lego blocks is determined by your imagination. We love our work because it’s just like being a child again making things with plastic bricks, except this time we use concrete.
What is your background?
I have over 20 years’ experience in the engineering and technology sector. I started my working life as an apprentice pipe fitter welder then went through mechanical to chemical process engineering. I worked for major engineering houses for international blue chip clients from design to completion on international engineering projects valued up to $150m. My best field I feel now is in research and development through to commercialisation. I have done this with my own companies and helped others from a brief idea to fully working, profitable owner operated plants and equipment in a wide range of industries.
I own a number of companies utilising a range of technologies to maximise profit from waste materials & reduce overheads. These companies aim to reduce landfill and decrease the carbon footprint by avoiding the need to export products abroad. They also aim to support the local infrastructure by providing raw materials created from waste to local businesses, in turn, avoiding the need to import. These companies offer comprehensive training schemes for unemployed local people, including those with special needs, equipping them with the necessary skills for success in the workplace and helping them to progress towards finding long-term employment.
"We have a full design service that value engineers each retaining wall to the project delivering effective solutions to civil engineering problems. "
I was recently asked to Downing Street to discuss my businesses and strategies for the Northern Powerhouse and North West growth particularly about environmental and export issues in introducing a circular economy of materials into raw material products. I was also recognised as one of the Insider 42 Under 42 North West business people.
I won Engineering CEO at a global business awards and my businesses have been shortlisted or won a wide range of awards, including Small Business of the Year, Innovation Business or the Year and Green Business of the Year. Hygienic Innovations product, PucMug, a way of cleaning steam wands on coffee machines, challenging the current method of using a cloth which is usually unsanitised has also won a Merseyside Innovation Award in January 2017.
Where do you want the company to be in two years time?
Rapid growth and J.V or license deals abroad with strategic global partners using our experience, equipment patented blocks and process for a more recycled geo-polymer block to reduce carbon.
If you could suggest one thing to Government to help business growth what would it be?
Make it easier to get finance when needed for short-term cash flow problems.
What do you do to relax away from the office?
Family times, meals, cinema, caravanning and holidays
What hobbies do you have?
I’m a mad inventor and can’t stop thinking about improvements to current products and future product development. I drive my family mad but my eldest daughter Jazmin feeds me with ideas now!
Have you any hidden talents?
Mainly problem solving, fixing things, selling and, weirdly enough, I am brilliant at stitching!
Any final thoughts?
Thanks to the support from Wirral Chamber of Commerce team for all my business support and growth - we wouldn’t be here without them!
If you would like to find out more about Bliockwalls and the work they do please viist its website