At dbfb, we reflect on our remarkable journey from humble beginnings to becoming a regional tech powerhouse. Founded by visionaries Brian Kingston and Bill Oliver 25 years ago, our story is one of constant evolution and unwavering dedication to our community and customers. As we look ahead to an exciting future, we’re ready to meet any challenges that come our way.
From Database for Business to Tech Leader
Our journey began as Database for Business (dbfb), specialising in mobile phones and airtime. Today, we stand as one of the region’s premier independent technology providers. Our reputation spans beyond mobile solutions, encompassing connectivity, cloud telephony, and comprehensive IT solutions. Notably, we’ve played a pivotal role in bringing high-speed fibre optics to Northamptonshire and Milton Keynes, laying the foundation for a connected world. Looking forward, we’re embracing Artificial Intelligence (AI) to streamline operations for the benefit of our valued customers.
Local Commitment and Expertise
When Simon Pickering joined us as Managing Director in 2016, two things drew him to dbfb. Firstly, our wholesale approach, granting us control over pricing and contract terms, and secondly, our roots as a local business serving local customers. Simon reflects on the journey, saying, “Bill and Brian saw an opportunity and took it. In those days, mobile phones were used for calls and texting, and no one could have imagined in 1998 where all this would end up. Who could have foreseen the likes of the iPhone and modern-day functionality?”
Unrivalled Product Selection and Expertise
As an independent provider, we have the freedom to select products from a wide range of options, ensuring tailored solutions for all our customers. Our commitment to expertise is evident at our new customer centre in our expanded Moulton Park offices. Here, we showcase a core list of solutions, all of which we use daily in our own operations. Simon emphasises, “Customers need to trust us – they want us to work with them to implement solutions that enhance their processes and productivity.”
Adapting to Change and Supporting Our Community
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated technology adoption, and we were there to guide businesses and individuals through this transformation. “People want us to educate them on how to leverage technology for the benefit of their businesses and employees,” says Simon.
In 2017, our partnership with CityFibre brought ultrafast fibre connectivity to Northamptonshire businesses, revolutionising connectivity for homes and businesses alike. This laid the foundation for 5G capabilities. “We were at the forefront of the full-fibre revolution,” Simon proudly states.
The Future: Growth, Commitment, and Sustainability
Looking forward, we’re committed to embracing the next technological revolution – AI. While human interaction remains vital, we aim to harness AI’s power to increase productivity for both our customers and ourselves.
In the past two years, we’ve exceeded our five-year plan, growing from a £2.5 million turnover company with 12 team members to a £12 million turnover business employing 50 individuals. The future holds exciting prospects, with ambitious growth goals on the horizon.
Our commitment to community remains unwavering. We continue to support Cynthia Spencer Hospice in memory of our co-founder, Bill Oliver. Additionally, we back the academies at Northamptonshire County Cricket and Northampton Town FC and are exploring apprenticeship partnerships to nurture local talent.
As Simon Pickering aptly puts it, “It is important to us to put something back into the local community.” Our commitment to sustainability is steadfast, recognising that even small businesses must consider their impact on the world. “Businesses that don’t take these issues seriously will face challenges in the coming years,” says Simon.
We remain resolute in our vision for the future, summarised in our straightforward business goals:
With unwavering dedication to growth, flexibility, competitiveness, and local service, dbfb is poised to continue its legacy of excellence for the next 25 years and beyond.