Co-working space provides the perfect energy for growth

Graham Davison, Founder of Total BGS

A UTILITIES start-up born out of a popular co-working hub is continuing to invest in the region two years on, with the creation of 40 new jobs.

Total BGS Energy, based at the North East Business and Innovation Centre (BIC), has continued to grow and create jobs over the past 12 months, despite the turbulent economic conditions brought about by the pandemic.

Founded in 2019 by head of energy and siteworks, Graham Davison, the company started life from the centre’s co-working hub, Open Space, before having to relocate three times in just under two years in order to house its growing team and adhere to social distancing measures.

The company – which specialises in the procurement of gas, water, card services and siteworks – now employs a team of 26 full-time members of staff, five of whom are based at the centre and 21 of whom work remotely across the UK.

Graham said: “Total BGS Energy was founded in 2019 to fill a gap in the market for small developer underground utility installations. However, while we knew we’d identified a gap that desperately needed filling, even we didn’t expect the company to be as big a success as it was in such a short space of time.

“Total BGS specialises in taking the stress out of utility procurement, be that electric, gas, water, card services or siteworks, and managing the entire end-to-end process for the customer, and our clients seem to have really bought into that ethos.

“Basically, by freeing up their time and providing a more managed service, not only can they spend more time focusing on growing their business, but they also choose their own tariffs as – unlike the majority of others in the industry – we work with almost every supplier on the market, meaning we can provide the best possible products at the best possible prices.

“In fact, this commitment to providing a more ethical and transparent approach to energy procurement has also led to us working closely with industry regulators to help improve legislative and regulatory issues within the sector and is something we’re proud to be a part of.”

Despite being based at the BIC for the past three years, the company’s latest move marks the first time the company has signed a long-term lease at the site and Graham believes it is a clear indicator of the company’s ambitions.

“We knew after just a couple of months of being in our first office that it wouldn’t be long until we were forced to move somewhere bigger and luckily for us the BIC is incredibly flexible in that sense,” he added.

“One of the most difficult things in business is often having the confidence to invest in growing your team and investing in growth however the ability to grow within our means at the BIC has really helped nullify any risk of that, it’s been fantastic.

“We’ve since moved three times and our latest move, which took place last month, signals the first time we have signed a long-term lease on a property and will be key to helping us grow as we look to continue expanding across the UK.

“Over the next 12 months, we aim to create another 40 jobs in management, energy services and administration and, while the majority of those roles will be for remote positions, we will also be expanding our team at the BIC as we continue investing in the region and our main head office.”

Donna Surtees, Centre Manager at the BIC, added: “The BIC was set up to provide an environment that helps entrepreneurs realise their ambitions, be it from a temporary workspace in our co-working facility or relocating to a larger serviced workspace.

“To see Total BGS and Graham go from a one-man-band to a business creating scores of jobs and continuing to invest in the region, is a perfect example of this in action and we are proud to have been able to fulfil their needs and support them on their journey.”

Find out more about the BIC’s flexible workspace options

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