Action Storage was formed over thirty years ago in April 1986. Starting out with only five people in just 350 square metres of office space, Tom Brialey, our founder and managing director, had a vision for supplying the very best new and used storage equipment with a more personal service.
After years working in the storage industry, Tom believed he could do it better. The multinational enterprises where he worked had an enormous wealth of knowledge, but they were struggling to share this with their customers in a meaningful way.
Action storage began by supplying shelving, pallet racking and mezzanine floors to warehouses and stockrooms across the U.K. But our focus was on sharing more than the latest storage products - we hoped to give our customers the honest advice and insider tips that would put them ahead of the competition.
Our determination to build relationships before revenue means we still see our early customers flourishing today - a constant reminder of what we’ve been about since Ferris Bueller skipped school.
The Naughty Nineties
After supplying the same storage solutions for many years, we determined to focus in on two areas that were underserved: storage lockers and commercial shelving. In 1992, we found a range of lockers we were proud to shout about, spreading the word to all our existing customers.
A few years later, after scouring the globe for a shelving system that overcame current limitations, we partnered with Metalsistem in Italy. Their innovative Supershelf shelving system was everything we were looking for, boasting a modular construction that can accommodate boxes, crates, folded items, hanging garments and more all in a single bay or in customisable runs.
Even better, Supershelf shelving is quick to assemble and easily adjusted. That means our shelving can grow and evolve along with your business at low cost and with even less hassle.
In 1996, we joined the digital revolution early and launched our first website. We understood right from the start that being online meant our customers could reach us more easily, allowing us to respond to their needs more effectively. It’s these interactions that led to expanding our product range, aiming to be a one stop shop for every stockroom and warehouse storage requirement.
A New Era
In the early 2000s, the loyalty of our customers meant we were able to upgrade our operation, moving into custom built premises at Wolverton Mill, Milton Keynes. Now we could put 1200 square metres of shiny new facilities, including offices and warehouse space, to their service.
The first step was to keep our most popular products in stock on site, enabling us to offer free UK mainland delivery within 7 working days. The offer stands today, and we now endeavour to deliver in even less time.
In 2006, we realised our frightening knowledge of storage could be put to better use by developing our very own storage solutions. Fed up with a dozen ranges of poor quality lockers, we determined to craft our own. After months of research and development, we launched eXtreme Plastic Lockers®.
Based on two decades’ experience working with schools and businesses, our eXtreme Lockers shook up the market. A tough polyethylene construction, coupled with a host of innovative features, ensures a uniquely durable, highly vandal resistant and hygienic personal storage solution. Best of all, eXtreme Lockers can be placed outside, saving you valuable indoor space.
However, by 2009, businesses and public budgets were feeling the impact of the recession. The pressure schools were under in particular encouraged us to push on and create another storage solution.
This time we sought to design an affordable steel locker without sacrificing a single feature. The result is our Atlas Steel Lockers® range. Atlas Lockers are absolutely packed with trail-blazing features, from a full-height reinforcement bar and corner stiffeners on each door to replaceable doors and lock barrels. They are also some of the best value units available today. Mission accomplished.
What We’ve Been up to Recently
Over the past few years, we’ve been focused on improving our existing products and expanding our reach. In 2009, we took advantage of the Launchpad scheme in Shanghai to employ our own representatives in China, which enabled us to better serve one of the largest markets in the world.
Our contacts in China also helped us improve manufacturing techniques back home. In 2012, we switched our eXtreme Plastic Locker production from rotational moulding to injection moulding. The advantages of this process meant we could overcome some minor design issues caused by the old process. Injection moulding also boosted our production capabilities by over 300%, resulting in fewer delays and a more streamlined service.
Our determination to understand the needs of the Chinese market led to increasing demand; so, in April 2014, we founded our sister company Shanghai Mammoth as a wholly owned Chinese subsidiary. Though still in its infancy, Shanghai Mammoth has already supported thousands of young students across China by supplying the highest quality school lockers currently available.
Moving forwards, we will continue to help businesses cut costs and boost profits by handling their inventory more efficiently. That means delivering the products that’ll keep storage areas running smoothly, but it also means sharing our 30+ years of experience on our blog to keep you ahead of the competition.
When it comes to our lockers, our primary aim is to help schools create beautiful and practical storage spaces, cutting wasted time between classes and protecting the health and wellbeing of students.