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He went on to create Venture in 2006, with the company now ranked within the top 5% of SIA approved security providers in the country.
We caught up with Paul to find out more about his passion for excellence, the Chinese restaurant he’ll always think of fondly and why he won’t be running another marathon anytime soon!
I’ve always been interested in geography and went on to do a degree in it at Plymouth University. Alongside my studies, I gained my local authority door supervisor license and started working in security for pubs and clubs. While I did explore the idea of joining the armed forces at one point, I was enjoying what I was doing and saw an opportunity there.
Over the years I had seen security done so badly by companies who were basically trying to get as much money as possible, for doing as little as they could! There was a real lack of organisation, transparency and professionalism and I knew I could create something better - which was where the idea for Venture was born.
Venture was officially founded in 2006 and it was all a massive learning curve! I attended as many Business Link courses and sought as much advice as I could and started to build some foundations.
In the beginning it was just me and a handful of door staff, who I supplied to pubs and other venues in the area. I’ll be honest, looking back at all the challenges over the years, it’s hard to imagine how the business survived, let alone grew like it did! Soon I was looking after security for venues and events across the area but also starting to increase the other areas of the business - static guarding, key holding, alarm response and mobile patrol contracts.
I’ll never forget the very first contract I ever won, which was for a Chinese restaurant in a village in Surrey. People from miles around would travel to it for birthday parties, hen and stag dos. It was an amazing place with Elvis impersonators and a real party atmosphere!
In 2018, we decided to sell the door supervision part of the business to our Ops Manager, who had been deeply involved in it up to that point. This meant we could fully concentrate on securing more business from corporate customers and expanding our range of commercial and event services.
Flashforward to today and we now have a team of nine people in our head office and more than 70 full time guards, plus hundreds of seasonal and event security staff who support us each year.
We’re proud to provide security for prestigious local attractions, such as Stonehenge and Salisbury Racecourse, as well as to be providing city centre security patrols for many towns and cities across the region. Plus working with big names, including Stannah and Simplyhealth, to protect their many different sites. And of course, it’s our privilege to manage security for a number of high-profile festivals, community and sporting events throughout the area.
It has been one long series of challenges to get to this point! Operating a business that provides services 24hours a day, 365 days a year on what was a very tight budget, is hard work. When Sara, my wife, joined the company full time in Sept 2013 that was another major turning point for us. She’s amazing and really good at getting stuff done!
I think recruiting the right people and working with the right kind of clients has been key to our success to date. It’s why we spend so much time putting stringent checks and measures in place. It’s also important that what we’re doing is underpinned by strong processes that support us to deliver a consistently high quality of service.
One of the things that really motivates me is hearing positive feedback. I love it when people talk about Venture so warmly. When you’re striving to be the best you can be, hearing others sing your praises is amazing validation.
We plan to build on our success to date and to grow the business substantially in the next few years. We intend to scale up in a sustainable way and to expand into new areas across the central, southern region. We will also be diversifying more deeply into other areas of security.
At work! When you’re the boss, it’s hard not to be!
I did used to be a big fitness fanatic and enjoyed doing lots of action sports and martial arts, but not so much now. I’m still a big fan of the outdoors though and will get out as much as I can to spend some quality time with the family. I’ve also just ordered a rowing machine and air bike to try and keep fit at home.
I once ran the London Marathon (pretty badly!), to raise money for the Rainbow Centre in Fareham. It was a pretty surreal experience. I’d always run a lot when I was younger and kind of thought I’d just fall back into it with no dramas…..but I was sadly mistaken!
Training for a marathon while running a security business was a challenge and I was sometimes having to do my training runs in the middle of the night, as that was the only time I could get out of the office.
When it came to the race itself, I ended up walking/ jogging from around 17 miles in and the last mile was a killer. But I did it and it was great to experience the buzz and energy. Especially now we’re also providing security for the event!
I have great empathy for every single person out there who runs a marathon and what they’re going through. Working at the finishing line of the event is an amazing experience as all the runners cross the line, each with a heart-warming story to tell. I’m extremely proud to have completed the marathon and got my medal - but I’d never do it again!
Venture has launched a new employee benefits reward scheme, giving employees access to a range of local offers and discounts, as well as medical care and support, and access to expert advice services.
Here we take a look back on 2019 and reflect on what has been a standout year for the Venture Security team.
Andover-based security specialist, Venture Security, is celebrating 10 years in business, as it continues to expand its reach across Hampshire and throughout central southern England.
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