Downham Market water treatment firm’s wave of contracts

PUBLISHED: 13:10 19 October 2011 | UPDATED: 13:46 19 October 2011

From left, Neil Attwell and Dave Norman of Advanced Water Treatment in Downham Market. Picture by: Matthew Usher.

From left, Neil Attwell and Dave Norman of Advanced Water Treatment in Downham Market. Picture by: Matthew Usher.

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A Downham Market water treatment company which has worked hard to go out and find business has been rewarded with a wave of contracts.

Advanced Water Treatment (AWT) – which was started by managing director Neil Attwell in 2005 – counts Essex-based Moulton Brown, an own-brand crisp manufacturer in London as well as a host of public sector organisations, including West Norfolk Council, among its clients.

The firm, which employs four people, saw its turnover increase by about 13pc to around £250,000 last year and it is expecting a similar increase this year.

Managing director Mr Attwell – who worked around the country as a water engineer before starting the business in his garage – said it had not been easy.

“Our overheads – because of the size of the company – are a lot lower than the big companies,” he said.

“We are definitely competitive. A big power station would never think about using a small company like ourselves, so we’ve had to build up our business using small companies.”

He added: “We do not lose many customers and I suppose as a small company we are able to provide a bit more of a personal service. If there is something wrong someone can contact the engineer direct rather than being passed around a corporation.”

He appointed Dave Norman as his business development manager in February 2010 so he could concentrate on being an engineer. He said that while in the past business would come to you, in the current climate it was important to go out and look for business.

“Many companies, both large and small, have gone out of business over the past few years. The knock-on effect of this is that their suppliers and customers business is often negatively affected.

“In order to protect our business against the adverse affect of other companies going out of business, I have ensured an even spread of business over a wide range of companies, so that if any one of our customers goes out of business, it does not sink our ship.”

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