Security firm says: The future is purple

The colourful Andrews & Wykeham HQ

Jamie Willis, Managing Director of Andrews & Wykeham

THE future is bright, the future is purple, for a brand new start up company that places trust at the very core of its business ethos.

That is according to Jamie Willis, the affable managing director of Andrews & Wykeham, headquartered at the beautiful Tudor style Lutyens Building, Bilton Road, on the Kingsland Business Park, Basingstoke.

Having made reference to the company’s corporate colour, Mr Willis said: “We are a bespoke security solutions company providing security devices and security components to government ministries and central banks and private corporations around the world.”

With high expectations that the company will grow into a multi-million-pound operation, Mr Willis said: “Holograms are one of our technologies, but we also provide special fibres which go into security papers, and threads, such as you’ll see in banknotes and security documents.

“Everything we are producing is either to confirm something is authentic, such as a birth certificate or to confirm that it hasn’t been altered, like a passport page with somebody’s photo and name, and indeed with a packet of medicine -you’d want to know that nobody has opened it and made a substitute.

With around a dozen people employed at Andrews & Wykeham, split between the office-based staff working at the Lutyens Building and specialist working at the company’s secure modern manufacturing facility, Mr Willis expects the company to grow quickly in the next 12 months, offering more employment opportunities.

Explaining why the company chose to base itself in Basingstoke, Mr Willis

said: “Here we are in a bit of a Silicon Valley for this industry, and also proximity to Heathrow and easy access to London is very important with our international customers.

“We are very proud to be able to contribute further with jobs in British manufacturing.

“Some people say that you can’t manufacture effectively in the UK, but that’s not really true – the UK does very well in all sorts of specialist manufacturing areas, like ourselves – we can still lead the world on a good day.”

Delighted to have the privilege of occupying the Lutyens Building, designed and built by renowned English architect Edwin Lutyens, for the Basingstoke Brick and Tile Company in 1905, Mr Willis said: “It’s an absolute dream.

“We’ve tried to redecorate the offices sympathetically, with wooden floors and the leather furnishings and so forth to be in keeping with the nature of the building.

“It’s a great opportunity for all of us to be able to work in such a special environment.”

Guests and staff attending the company’s official launch party on Friday mingled in the listed building before moving on to the manufacturing facility, where they enjoyed cocktails and entertainment.

There, business development director Max Zolotukhin told guests: “We have seen a bit of a miracle here – if you look at this facility now, in the last nine months since February, it’s like a baby has been born.”

In thanking all involved in setting up and supporting the new business, including customers and staff, Mr Zolotukhin said: “This is probably one of the quickest start-ups that has ever been done in this industry.”

Mr Willis concluded the formalities of the evening with a toast, saying:

“The future is bright, the future is purple.”

Richard Garfield, Basingstoke Gazette