Davis & Shirtliff Celebrates its 75th Anniversary

Davis & Shirtliff, the leading water and power equipment provider in East Africa is celebrating its seventy fifth Anniversary, a significant milestone in its company history. This is a most uncommon achievement for any organisation, although especially one which has the identical household shareholding and basically the same market focus since its founding. There are few companies wherever with this declare and D&S is therefore extraordinarily pleased with the achievement with various events being held in celebration.
The firm was based in 1946 by ex-soldiers Eddie Davis and Dick Shirtliff after leaving the army, initially being based mostly at Westlands, in Nairobi, their neighbour being Westlands Motors that rose to prominence with the Toyota franchise.
Bona fide grew quickly because the country recovered after the struggle focusing on boreholes, water provides and the espresso trade. One notable early venture included the water provide for Karen Estates, the complete initial water provide infrastructure being installed by the company as properly as for many different of the residential estates that have been developed at that time.
D&S grew with the country and within the mid-1950s the bottom was moved to new bigger premises at the moment Dundori Rd location within the industrial space. An added activity was swimming pools, both residential and commercial and heaps of were built which are nonetheless in use today. Water Treatment was another diversification, most of the KenGen Tana River stations having D&S designed and constructed equipment.
In 1970 associate Dick Shirtliff retired and after a period with another associate, Devji Shingadia, the Davis family, then represented by Eddie’s son Alec assumed control. The 70’s and 80’s saw sluggish but steady growth as the nation grappled with numerous economic and political challenges, though there was a selected focus on building the pump business for which the corporate is so well-known, notably by way of illustration of the Danish manufacturer Grundfos.
1993 was a big yr for both Kenya and D&S because of financial liberalisation which was the catalyst for the company’s speedy progress since. It was additionally the yr that Pedrollo pumps from Italy have been first launched, now the Group’s largest provider. These two developments enabled a distribution strategy to be developed as supply constraints had been eliminated and the department network was then established, initially with Kenya branches being opened in Westlands, Eldoret and Kisumu and subsidiaries in Uganda and Tanzania quickly followed by establishing activities on the Coast although the merger with companion Butech. The pump enterprise grew vastly with Pedrollo and the now well-established Solar and Power Generation actions were then added.
Since the Millennium progress has significantly accelerated, revenue rising many instances to KShs10 Billion right now. Major initiatives have included a whole redevelopment of the Dundori Rd website with expansion into adjoining plots, the opening of subsidiaries and associate firms in Rwanda, Zambia, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Zimbabwe and DRC, appreciable progress of the branch community, introduction of the successful Dayliff range of own-brand merchandise and an enormous enlargement of the product vary with Solar being particularly successful as the company developed its give consideration to renewable power. More just lately a significant growth has been establishment of an enormous 10,000m2 Distribution Centre at Tatu City that provides the resource for elevated stockholding and has reworked distribution effectivity throughout the area, this facility being accomplished in 2020. Staffing has also grown correspondingly, the Group now using over a thousand dedicated workers working from over 70 places.
It is usually mentioned that success is transitory and typically unsustainable, although D&S has managed to keep up unbroken growth for an distinctive time frame. This has been achieved by business focus, manageable ambition, continuous bodily and organisational investment and, importantly, residing the values established by the founders of Quality, Integrity and ‘Altiora Peto’, which translates to embracing steady change. D&S is now a extensively recognised firm within the area and is proud of the contribution it has made, summarised by its slogan ‘Improving Lives’ which is demonstrated each by the essential nature of its activities and in addition by an active programme of neighborhood assist that focuses on providing water to underprivileged communities, many 1000’s of individuals having benefited.
Of course, the 75-year milestone is only a second in a continuous journey and the Group continues to develop with a quantity of ongoing initiatives and great plans for the longer term. Ably led by CEO David Gatende and supported by devoted and committed executives and workers driving this growth, the corporate is lucky that the third technology of Davis’s, Edward and Henry, have joined the business so continuity is assured. The Group continues to increase in product and markets with a selected concentrate on digital enterprise and looks ahead to maintain serving the region with essential merchandise that certainly Improve Lives and also to demonstrate that an indigenous African firm can compete internationally and be a world-class organisation.
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