Pranosh believes the only way to retain and grow your client base is by ensuring you provide the best service you can. PK Valves provides a 24hour support service to the agriculture sector and this has ensured they have continuous business from this sector and the industrial sector.
Pranosh Bhagwandeen and his wife, Keshinee registered P K Valves cc in 2001. Having worked in the industry for many years he understood the industry and his business grew. However he realized that he could extend their services from service and installation of water valves, pipes and fittings to the retail of valves, pipes etc which required storage space and an aggressive sales team.
Pranosh built a new warehouse in 2010 which has created more storage space and therefore he can increase his stock in hand which is good for his clients. He also employed sales personnel thus increasing his staff compliment. PK valves currently have a staff compliment of 10 however when he is awarded a contract to lay water pipes for the Municipalities he uses staff from the Rural Community. “I employ about 40 people with a major concentration on women and youth, from the local community. These people are provided with PPE equipment and trained in basic safety in the construction environment”. We use these people to dig the trenches for laying the pipes. These jobs are not long term but they do provide an income for those few months.” They also receive training and 2 or 3 of the 40 people are trained to install the valves which I believe they could use this training in future to secure employment. We have recruited 2 of these trainees as permanent staff.
Due to the growth in business in 2008, Pranosh visited the BSC for assistance in particular with regard to CIDB registration. Since the BSC is accredited with SAIBL (South African Business Linkages), Pranosh was identified as a business that can partake in this initiative. This involved an intense diagnostic evaluation of PK Valves which highlighted a few gaps on how he currently does business and how he could change a few things in order to grow his business. After a proper analysis of the findings of the diagnostic evaluation a few priorities were identified. However the main priority was for PK Valves to obtain ISO certification. SAIBL agreed and they funded 50% of the cost of the ISO certification. In 2011 PK Valves went through the training and implementation and will obtain certification later this year.
Working with SAIBL has also exposed Pranosh to tenders in Africa and hopefully with his ISO certification in place he will be able to compete with other businesses for these tenders. Pranosh says he is looking forward to the day he lands his first contract in Africa as doing business with the rest of Africa has always been his dream. He would also like to supply larger corporate clients in KZN.
Pranosh’s advice is hard work and a great amount of sacrifice e.g. family time and holidays is what it takes to ensure your startup becomes a sustainable compliant business.
P K Valves is a level 3 supplier and is also a member of SASDC(South African Supplier Diversity Council). Using PK Valves in your supply chain will ensure you gain valuable Preferential Procurement points as PK valves is 100% Black owned.