Davis & Shirtliff Celebrates its 75th Anniversary

Davis & Shirtliff, the main water and energy tools supplier in East Africa is celebrating its 75th Anniversary, a significant milestone in its company history. This is a most uncommon achievement for any organisation, although particularly one that has the identical household shareholding and primarily the same market focus since its founding. There are few companies anyplace with this claim and D&S is subsequently extremely proud of the achievement with numerous events being held in celebration.
The firm was founded in 1946 by ex-soldiers Eddie Davis and Dick Shirtliff after leaving the army, initially being primarily based at Westlands, in Nairobi, their neighbour being Westlands Motors that rose to prominence with the Toyota franchise.
It grew rapidly because the nation recovered after the struggle specializing in boreholes, water supplies and the espresso business. One notable early challenge included the water supply for Karen Estates, the complete initial water supply infrastructure being installed by the company as nicely as for many different of the residential estates that were developed at the moment.
D&S grew with the country and in the mid-1950s the bottom was moved to new larger premises at the present Dundori Rd location within the industrial space. An added activity was swimming pools, both residential and business and many had been built which may be nonetheless in use today. Water Treatment was one other diversification, most of the KenGen Tana River stations having D&S designed and built gear.
In 1970 associate Dick Shirtliff retired and after a interval with one other partner, Devji Shingadia, the Davis family, then represented by Eddie’s son Alec assumed control. The 70’s and 80’s saw slow however regular growth as the nation grappled with numerous financial and political challenges, though there was a particular concentrate on building the pump enterprise for which the company is so well known, notably via illustration of the Danish producer Grundfos.
1993 was a major 12 months for both Kenya and D&S due to financial liberalisation which was the catalyst for the company’s rapid progress since. It was also the 12 months that Pedrollo pumps from Italy have been first introduced, now the Group’s largest provider. These two developments enabled a distribution strategy to be developed as provide constraints have been eliminated and the branch community was then established, initially with Kenya branches being opened in Westlands, Eldoret and Kisumu and subsidiaries in Uganda and Tanzania quickly followed by establishing actions on the Coast though the merger with companion Butech. The pump business grew hugely with Pedrollo and the now well-established Solar and Power Generation activities have been then added.
Since the Millennium growth has greatly accelerated, income increasing many instances to KShs10 Billion today. Major initiatives have included a whole redevelopment of the Dundori Rd site with enlargement into adjacent plots, the opening of subsidiaries and associate companies in Rwanda, Zambia, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Zimbabwe and DRC, considerable growth of the branch community, introduction of the successful Dayliff range of own-brand merchandise and a huge growth of the product range with Solar being particularly profitable as the corporate developed its focus on renewable power. More lately a major improvement has been institution of an enormous 10,000m2 Distribution Centre at Tatu City that gives the resource for elevated stockholding and has remodeled distribution efficiency throughout the region, this facility being completed in 2020. Staffing has additionally grown correspondingly, the Group now using over a thousand committed staff working from over 70 areas.
It is often mentioned that success is transitory and generally unsustainable, although D&S has managed to take care of unbroken progress for an distinctive period of time. This has been achieved by commercial focus, manageable ambition, continuous physical and organisational investment and, importantly, dwelling the values established by the founders of Quality, Integrity and ‘Altiora Peto’, which translates to embracing steady change. D&S is now a widely recognised company within the region and is pleased with the contribution it has made, summarised by its slogan ‘Improving Lives’ which is demonstrated both by the important nature of its activities and also by an lively programme of group help that focuses on offering water to underprivileged communities, many thousands of individuals having benefited.
Of Surge , the 75-year milestone is only a second in a continuous journey and the Group continues to develop with a number of ongoing initiatives and nice plans for the longer term. Ably led by CEO David Gatende and supported by dedicated and committed executives and employees driving this progress, the corporate is fortunate that the third era of Davis’s, Edward and Henry, have joined the business so continuity is assured. The Group continues to broaden in product and markets with a selected concentrate on digital business and appears ahead to maintain serving the region with important products that certainly Improve Lives and in addition to reveal that an indigenous African company can compete internationally and be a world-class organisation.

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