Word of mouth builds up Fareham business for two friends

H&E's Philip Evison and Darren Hardy
H&E's Philip Evison and Darren Hardy

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PLUMBERS and electricians sometimes get a bad reputation for being unreliable – but one Fareham company is determined to change that.

H&E Electrical & Mechanical was set up by friends Darren Hardy and Philip Evison in April last year.

They met while working on a building site, with Darren as a contracts manager and Philip a site supervisor, and decided to branch out and set up their own plumbing and electrical business.

Since then, the business has taken off, with people reacting well to their high-quality service. It has expanded from their original office in Darren’s spare room in Gosport to a fully-fledged business in a unit at Fareham Enterprise Centre, in Hackett Way.

Darren said: ‘We started with one van and a bag of tools and £0 in the bank. Since then, with a lot of time, effort and a bit of luck on the way, we are now moving into our third premises, recently acquired our ninth vehicle and employ 10 personnel from the local area and 10 to 15 people as additional sub-contractor labour as required.’

Despite having no website or internet presence, word of mouth has seen the company grow into one with a £1.4m projected turnover this year.

H&E has taken on contracts – commercial and domestic – from across the south for schools, offices, student accommodation, high-spec apartments in London plus others.

Darren said: ‘The quality of work is what we have stuck by – that’s what has got us success. Simple things like being on time and the way we are with people go a long way. That attitude cascades down.’

Darren, 28, has even expanded his own family, with the birth of his first child Franky in November. Darren’s wife Sarah will also be joining the company when she returns from maternity leave.

For more information on the company, please call 01329 609628.