Directors: Charlene Campbell and Richard Rae (pic: Terry Murden)
Charlene Campbell is one of the few women heading a security firm and she has ambitious plans, she tells TERRY MURDEN
As the next twist and turn in the pandemic tests the resilience of the economy, it has also been partly responsible for growth at one Scottish firm. SIM Fire and Security has a broad-based customer base but has also picked up a lot of work in the pharmaceutical and life science sectors which have been at the heart of the fight against Covid-19.
“The security market is in demand. Even during Covid it has not stopped,” says Charlene Campbell, managing director of the Cambuslang-based business. “Security is now a need rather than a want.”
SIM, which installs and maintains security systems, expects turnover of £2m this year – double its income two years ago – as it continues to expand across the central belt. Campbell is now looking to extend its reach south of the border.
“Next year we would be looking to buy another business. The five year plan would be to have a few acquisitions under our belt.”
That will mean a shift in the model that has seen SIM finance its development entirely from within its own resources since it was set up by Andrew Sim in 2004.
Campbell joined another firm that Sim was running soon after she left school and followed him to the current business. It was also the plan that she would take over. When he retired three years ago she bought the company from him and has become one of the few women running a security business in Scotland.
Lawyer Michael Currie at Aberdein Considine is now on hand to advise on external finance and the firm’s other dealings. “He’s been really good. I get a lot of support from Aberdein Considine,” says Campbell.
Three months ago she promoted Richard Rae to sales director. He joined the firm as an apprentice engineer and soon showed an aptitude for selling that has now given him a senior role in developing the business.
“It’s a big bonus for us and for clients that Richard is not only a good salesman but he actually knows how the system works,” says Campbell.
There are plans to add a couple of apprentices and two engineers to the team at Cambuslang. It relocated to the area from Blanefield to have greater access to the motorways serving the central belt and to provide more storage space.
The company is accredited to gold standard with the National Security Inspectorate.
“We can be called out at any time of the day or week,” says Campbell, “but we rise to the challenge and ensure we put the clients’ needs first.”
Further information: Sim Fire and Security