Interviews

The UK’s fastest growing private companies: Hot 100 2015 – (21) Strongvox

3 min read

26 June 2015

Former deputy editor

Somerset-based Strongvox develops homes around the West Country, supporting the buying and building process in picturesque locations including Cornwall and Dorset.

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Name: Strongvox
Industry/sector: Construction, property and related services
Date founded: 2003
The boss: Toby Ballard
Location: South West
Latest turnover: £15.5m
Three-year compound growth rate (%): 57.24
Latest EBITDA: £1.4m

Residential property developer Strongvox is based in the picturesque county of Somerset and specialises in the creation of homes across the West Country.

As Robert Alford, land director at Strongvox, puts it: “We have an enviable reputation for unique projects and adventurous developments and thrive on the challenge.”

After a spell in the Merchant Navy, Alford joined his family’s general contracting and development business, Alford Brothers.

As a qualified builder he soon stated to estimate and survey properties before planning and moving into land buying in the late 1970s. Described as “one of the most experienced land buyers in the South West” he has an ambition to take on different schemes with Strongvox.

The firm has developments in Minehead, Devon, Cornwall and Dorset, from small port towns like Bideford to bungalows and four bed homes in Minehead.

“Strongvox have carried out a number of joint ventures with both land owners and housing associations over the years. Because we are a privately owned company we find that we can be more creative when it comes to doing deals compared to other larger companies,” the firm said.

“We are also happy to be involved in projects that include an element of commercial developments, having successfully completed both office and retail schemes in the past.”

One such joint venture was negotiated at the end of 2014, ultimately helping the company to secure growth with its CAGR of 57.24 per cent. Teaming with West of England Developments in a deal that was brokered by CJH Land, Strongvox will create homes in the village of Trull, which has a population of just 2,000. 20 of the properties are set to be of the executive detached property and ten of them falling under affordable housing.

Toby Ballard, managing director of Strongvox, said: “We are building everything from two-bedroom coach houses over garages right up to very large five-bedroom detached houses with triple garages.We are a small private house builder that does not build the same standard houses everywhere.

“We spend a lot of time designing beautiful homes and there really is no disadvantage from a design perspective from buying an older property. Coupled with the huge benefits with regard to energy efficiency and reduced maintenance I think more people should consider buying a new build home.”

The firm opened a show home at its Sandhill Park development in the village of Bishops
Lydeard in March, offering properties priced between £400,000 and £700,000.

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