THE year 2010 was one of mixed fortunes for Louth company National Vibration Monitoring (NVM). Early that year, the firm won the SFA Outstanding Small Business Award, but by the end of 2010 it had started to feel the full force of the recession.
NVM provides geotechnical, structural and environmental monitoring products and services to the construction industry. Set up in 2004 by Noel Carr and Edward Meade, the firm had seen initial steady growth in the first six years of business. With the construction sector on a downward spiral by 2010, NVM had to recalibrate.
Since 2011 it has shown real determination to achieve further growth, and indeed has continued to achieve moderate growth through the difficult years. The firm adapted by developing an instrumentation hire service and achieving recognised Irish agency status for UK suppliers. This made NVM the go-to company for monitoring instrumentation in Ireland. NVM is an agent for Vibrock, Svantek, Geosense, Sensidyne and Gilian.
Carr says the company continues to change and adapt its business plan, implementing a positive six-point strategy. This has involved focusing its marketing and business development on the pharmaceutical service industries to increase its market share and to shift from the construction industry.
It aims to clearly communicate its point of difference to new and existing customers, while building and maintaining strong relationships with key decision makers, and it has invested in educating the market. NVM supplies instrumentation samples to customers and colleges.
The firm has cut its running costs as well as its supplier costs to maintain market competitiveness. Notwithstanding, it has continued to invest in staff training, new equipment and monitoring techniques.
"We have provided our client base with more cost efficient options on monitoring, and in doing this we have remained a loyal supplier, and can act as a back-up service should the need for independent monitoring advice arise," says Carr.
"This will hopefully provide us with a clear path for future growth from our employment base of two full-time and two part-time employees in addition to the two directors," he adds.
NVM estimates a 12pc profit margin in 2014 with a continuation up to 15pc for 2015, as it looks to establish itself as a clear leader in the supply, hire and service divisions of the construction, pharmaceutical and environmental industry.
Carr says the firm has seen some promising signs of growth in recent months. "There's definitely been a lot more tenders for work. If these green shoots take hold, we will be busy," he says.
Find out more about NVM's services at www.nvm.ie