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Gloucestershire firm aims to clean up in road sweeper market

By BHawes  |  Posted: February 18, 2014

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The only British-owned road sweeper vehicle company is set to expand its Gloucestershire base as overseas and UK orders continue to grow.

Stocks Sweepers Limited has its headquarters at Vantage Point Business Village, Mitcheldean, with a further centre at nearby Abenhall Saw Mills.

The company employs more than 30 people and with a busy order book up until next October it is planning to expand its workspace from the existing 12,000 square feet to 34,000 square feet.

"I think we will need to take on another 20 people in the next 12 months," said Stocks Sweepers founder and managing director Jeff Stock.

Jeff has seen his business career progress in an unusual "back to front" fashion. From buying his first JCB digger at 18 he went on to operate and hire out road sweepers before refurbishing them and finally becoming a manufacturer of roadsweepers in his own right.

"My dad always said observe the masses and do the opposite," said Jeff, 48, with a wry smile.
Jeff, whose main competitors in this country are Swiss and French-owned, founded Stocks Sweepers in 1998 and it has become one of the world's largest independent manufacturers of truck-mounted suction road sweepers.

 The business was originally created with the sole intent of refurbishing and remounting existing road sweeper equipment on to new chassis for the firm's own operated hire fleet.

But other road sweeper operators in the UK and overseas soon approached Stocks Sweepers to have their equipment refurbished and remounted when they realised huge savings could be achieved.

 Now the firm has a £3.2 million turnover and last year manufactured 25 road sweepers, which sell at around £110,000 each.

A third of sales go overseas. One sweeper has just gone to Australia and two more to Canada, with Europe also an important market.

 His family is much involved in the business with sons Mitch, 22, in charge of production and Tom, 20, working on computer-aided design for the company.

The business now encompasses six firm including: Stocks Sweepers which manufactures the sweepers; Stocks UK (reconditioned road sweepers); Stocks Rentals; Stocks Truck Imports; Stocks Used Vehicle Sales and Stocks Power Solutions.

The latter produces ePowerStore, a clean and silent portable power unit which replaces the traditional generator to provide mains power at events such as weddings and festivals with no noise or emissions.

Jeff is confident that the firm will continue to grow. He said: "We are building a really good name for ourselves.
"I'd like us to be the Bentley or Rolls Royce of the road sweeper industry."

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  • SmlngAssassin  |  February 18 2014, 3:58PM

    I'm sure Jeff will sleep a lot easier following zinboya's advice. After all he's only built up a successful multi national business from scratch.

  • zinboya  |  February 18 2014, 10:58AM

    Don,t ever sell out to the Big boys, they will destroy you, to keep the market there domain.

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