by Gavin Stoker Published 01/06/2011
From its base in Dublin, Ireland, since 1981 Photovalue Ltd has consistently offered high quality folders and strut mounts to professional photographers throughout the UK. Of course, nobody survives 30 years of trading without doing something right. So what's Photovalue's secret?
The answer is simple. According to Sales and Marketing Director Ronan Ryle, who along with his brother Keith took over the business from their father, it has the most extensive range of photographic presentation products available on the market. Plus, by investing in and using its own market leading equipment, Photovalue has managed to live up to its name by being extremely price competitive.
With an online presence in Photovalue.com further bolstering business, as well as supplying mounts to event, portrait, wedding and landscape photographers, the company also delivers many millions of mounts each year to its customers in the schools photography sector.
According to Ronan, this constitutes about a third of its business, the other two thirds made up of marketing direct to social photographers - with around 1200 regular, repeat customers - and, interestingly, manufacturing foil packaging for pharmaceuticals.
Although the latter might seem like a random addition to the business, the knock on effect is that Photovalue has what it considers is the best equipment for making photo strut mounts on the market. "Which means we can make mounts more efficiently than anyone else, at higher speeds," says Ronan.
In 1996 when I took over at Photovalue, at that stage photo mounts were a very small part of the business. But we undertook a study of the market and then went knocking on doors.
"Through a mixture of hard graft and the right product, one of the first companies that I got was School Pictures International in Mansfield, who were [at the time] one of Spicer Hallfield's biggest customers.
"We were able to offer some patented technology for solving a problem that they had of glue lines moving on their existing mounts. By ensuring that glue lines didn't move, we managed to help them increase their packing speeds and we won the contract thereafter."
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