Posted on

“The Skate People” – The Mover magazine, June 2018

Evo Supplies furniture skate moving dollies removals Mover Magazine

We were delighted to welcome David Jordan, Deputy Editor of The Mover magazine, to our factory and warehouse in West Mersea a few weeks ago.

Here’s what he wrote after spending a morning with the Evo team:

Deputy Editor David Jordan takes a trip to Mersea Island in Essex to visit Evo Supplies, one of Britain’s leading manufacturers of furniture skates.

When I phoned Evo Supplies’ Managing Director Juliet Dunn to arrange a time for our meeting, I was a little surprised when she said, “I’ll just check the tide tables to make sure you can get across.” The company is based on Mersea Island (it’s pronounced Mersey by the way, if like me you didn’t know) and you have to cross a causeway to reach it by road. Around full moon it can be up to a metre deep in water for up to two hours, so you need to check first.

The Romans, based at the nearby garrison town of Camulodunum (Colchester), used to holiday here and developed a taste for Mersea’s oysters, even exporting them the thousand-odd miles back to Rome, in barrels filled with seawater. Oysters and other seafood delights are still enjoyed on Mersea today, by locals and tourists alike. Visit the Company Shed fishmongers/restaurant on the waterfront if you ever come here.

Having safely dodged the Blackwater tide, I arrived at Evo Supplies’ factory on a small industrial estate in West Mersea and was greeted at the door by a beaming Juliet. Over tea and chocolate biscuits she told me their story.

Juliet and her husband Greg started Evo Supplies in 2013. “It happened almost by accident,” explained Juliet. “We were renting warehouse space near here for

The skate business is competitive and Evo’s skates are not necessarily the cheapest on the market, so I asked Juliet how they have managed to grow the business.

“The personalisation of the skates is one reason, but quality is what really sets us apart,” said Juliet. “Not just of the skates themselves but the customer service that comes with them. We sell thousands of skates a year, but if anyone has a problem with one of our products, which is rare, we replace it without question or quibble. We had a few customers go elsewhere in the early years because of price, but nearly all have come back because they believe our quality and personal service is worth paying a little bit extra for.

“Since taking on the leadership of Evo full-time in 2016, I’ve been focusing on raising both our game and our profile. The annual Movers & Storers Show gives us a fantastic opportunity to showcase not just our products but our ethos to removals industry professionals, and we’re really looking forward to this year’s show in Manchester. We’re constantly adding new products to our range and improving our production processes, we’ll make pretty much any bespoke item to our customers’ specifications, and we can offer really competitive discounts on bulk orders.”

About 50% of Evo’s business is with the removals industry, with furniture retailers, Interestingly, since the Brexit vote Juliet has noticed an increase in companies specifically interested in buying British-made products.

Notwithstanding the above, at the end of 2017 Evo introduced an imported economy range, ‘Hello Dollies’. “Not every customer needs or can afford a dolly that can carry a tonne and withstand years of heavy-duty professional use, so we designed an economy range and visited China to find a manufacturer to make them exclusively for us,” said Juliet. “We’re delighted with the quality of the new products, and the sub-brand allows us to compete in the budget-priced market. However, our home-grown Evo dollies will always be at the core of our business and we are very proud to be one of the few British manufacturers producing high-quality skates for the professional removals industry.”

Juliet and Greg are keen sailors and often take part in races on the Blackwater in their boat Black Diamond. The Evo factory, offices and products are equally ship-shape and a credit to them and the enthusiastic people who work there.

Posted on

Bernard Jenkin MP visits Evo Supplies

Bernard Jenkin MP visits Evo Supplies furniture skate moving dolly Juliet Dunn

We were pleased to welcome our local MP, Bernard Jenkin MP, to the Evo Supplies workshops last week.

Some of the local and national issues discussed included:

As chair of the Commons Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Select Committee, Bernard is closely involved in conducting an inquiry into the collapse of Carillion.

Bernard’s office contacted Evo following our appearance in this year’s Parliamentary Review.

The Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee

The Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee (PACAC) examines constitutional issues and the quality and standards of administration within the Civil Service. It also scrutinises the reports of the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman.

It is a committee of Members of Parliament, appointed by the House of Commons and drawn from the three largest political parties. It works principally by undertaking inquiries. It chooses its own subjects of inquiry and seeks evidence from a wide range of groups and individuals with relevant interests and experience. The committee produces reports setting out its findings and making recommendations to the government.

Bernard Jenkin

Bernard Jenkin has been the MP for Harwich and North Essex since the 2010 general election. He was first elected to represent Colchester North in the 1992 general election. He went on to represent North Essex before the current Harwich and North Essex constituency was created.

The Small Business Commissioner – tackling late payments

The office of the Small Business Commissioner (SBC) was launched in December 2017. Its aim is to ensure fair payment practices for Britain’s 5.7 million small businesses. The Small Business Commissioner supports businesses in resolving their payment disputes with larger businesses and bring about culture change.

The Parliamentary Review

The Parliamentary Review is a prestigious annual publication, combining political commentary from leading journalists, with sector specific insight from Secretaries of State, Ministers and MPs. It offers an indispensable guide to industry best practice, which demonstrates how sector leaders have responded to challenges in the political and economic environment. The Review has several editions, each focusing on an individual policy area with the strategic aim of raising standards by highlighting best practice.

It is sent to over 500,000 leading business executives, policy makers and other relevant individuals. The Review’s release is marked by an annual gala in the Palace of Westminster.

In 2017, Evo Supplies were proud to be selected as a “Best Practice Representative” in the Manufacturing edition of The Parliamentary Review. You can read our Parliamentary Review story here and here.