In 1972 husband and wife team; Graham & Jacqualine Bultitude decided to start their own business, having observed that there were ‘X number of people living in Bristol, and they own X number of cars, they’ll be looking for X number of replacement batteries’, Bristol Batteries was born.
Operating from Backfields in Bristol with their own label Avon battery, the business started to grow at a rapid rate; a move to Newfoundland Road in the City centre saw the company’s first expansion.
In the late 70’s Bristol Batteries was one of the first companies in the UK to become a distributor for premium battery brand Varta, a relationship that continues today. This was closely followed by a distribution contract with Yuasa the leading Japanese brand, and again this relationship still thrives today.
The decade of the 80’s saw the establishment of 2 further branches in Swindon and Truro, CornwallBatteries, taking the total to three. Through the 90’s the company established a reputation for quality and service, and today has a customer base of over 5000, shipping all over the UK, Europe and the Far East.
In 2007 the Company acquired two more branches in Exeter, ExeterBatteries & Plymouth, SouthWestBatteries, this acquisition and some shrewd business decisions enabled the company to double its turnover between 2005 and 2010. This growth fuelled a move in the summer of 2010 to a new Head Office and Bristol branch of some 14,000sq ft; with more space the company has been able to turnaround and meet more orders quicker than ever before.
The 2012/2013 year was a particularly busy year for the company; in late 2012 the Swindon branch moved into bigger premises giving more space for an increased battery testing facility and a full shop area. May of 2013 saw the Truro branch also move into new, bigger premises; only two doors away from the original warehouse the new branch has enabled the team to expand the range, offer a car battery testing & fitting facility & open a shop area demonstrating many of the accessory lines we now stock.
June 2013 also saw the launch of the company’s online E-commerce site; after years of requests from customers to be able to order online the website has been launched offering a wide range of products & accessories. The launch of the website also prompted the decision to re-brand the business. After over 40 years as Bristol Batteries a fresh, new corporate image was needed and the whole company has been renamed BBL Batteries.
Our long standing relationships with our customers was demonstrated when we were offered Evesham Battery Centre in late 2015. In January 2016 the branch at Evesham Marina joined the group becoming BBL Batteries Evesham. This location was key to our expansion into the Midlands and has enabled us to extend our weekly own-van deliveries up to 50 miles of this branch.
High standards have always been one of the key elements to BBL Batteries’ success, they endeavour to exceed their customers expectations in every way. Indeed in 2010 BBL Batteries achieved registration to the ISO9001:2008, the internationally recognised standard for Quality Management Systems. It ensures that every process within the business conforms to the applicable statutory and regulatory requirements, and aims to enhance customer satisfaction through the effective application of this system.
Staff have always been a very important part of the business, and Graham & Jacqualine are very proud of their workforce. Graham was recently quoted as saying “They’re the best…, we have a vast range of experience within our staff, and many have been with us in excess of 10 years”.
Advances in the energy industry are happening daily and BBL Batteries is embracing these changes with divergence in its ranges to include new technologies such as Start-Stop, Nickel-metal hydride and Solar Panels. In 2011 in addition to its own brand Avon label batteries, BBL Batteries started manufacturing its own Solar range under the Avon brand.
With premium brands and numerous niche products, not to mention its own on-site nicad pack building facility, BBL Batteries remains a favourite among its customers.