A SOUTH Tyneside entrepreneur is successfully bringing the feminine touch to the bathroom business.
In April 2010, Gill Beard, husband Kevin and their business partner Robert Moore identified a gap in the market for a new bathroom showroom in the centre of South Shields.
Apollo Bathrooms was successfully launched in Fowler Street, and the firm has not only since doubled the size of its showroom, but also imported mirrors from China and launched a second successful sister business, The Athena Company.
While her husband and their business partner fitted bathrooms, Mrs Beard initially faced a steep learning curve in the complexities of running a new business.
But Mrs Beard used the customer service skills she acquired while working at Monkton Stadium, Jarrow, plus 15 years in the property industry, to deliver a quality customer service.
Now managing director Mrs Beard is making her mark in a generally male-dominated industry.
She said: “I have a passion for quality bathroom design, and The Athena Company has allowed me to extend the quality of goods and services we provide beyond the North East.
“Working in the bathroom industry, I quickly realised that it is very much a male-dominated industry.
“Creating a dream bathroom is not just about the functional aspects – although they are, of course, very important – it is also about the aesthetics, and The Athena Company is all about those finishing touches, the feminine side.
“The Athena Company has been an amazing and rewarding experience, further developing my own online presence, and I look forward to again working with the manufacturers in China to grow The Athena Company.”
Apollo Bathrooms, which has three fitting teams, also works with other local firms on delivering its contracts.
The company has also recently been in contact with Gateshead Council about the possibility of taking on apprentices in the future.
For information, call 456 0363 or visit www.apollobathrooms.com