Gary Cleaver founded this Leicester-based mechanical and electrical contractor in 2003. The firm specialises in local contracts, working with local businesses and employing local people. “We do a lot of work with Leicester city council on their schools programme,” says Cleaver. “We love that. It gives my staff a sense of belonging when they go back and work in the schools they attended as children.” But this business model is based on more than just sentimentality: “I’ve worked for a national company,” he continues. “Sometimes the ball gets too big to kick. If you break things down locally, you have more control.” This control is evident in the numbers. Warmsley has seen steady growth – 32.5 per cent year-on-year – over the past four years. But Cleaver expects this year to be tough on business: “We’re a sub-contractor,” he explains. “That puts us in the middle, between the contractor and the supplier. It means we’re always the last to get paid, so we’re having to be very prudent with cash flow.” Nevertheless, Cleaver has no doubt the firm will continue growing this year. “We get a lot of repeat business,” he says. “I know we’ll grow this year. And we’ll have grown again in five years. Whether we do next year or not depends on the global economy.”


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