History – Poole Bay Holdings
About Us

We are a leading UK B2B eCommerce and catalogue marketer with product marketing expertise across a wide range of health, safety, and facilities products.


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    Timeline
    Milestones


    1993

    The No Butts Bin Company (NBB) founded to market cigarette bins and smoking shelters.

    2000

    CMUK Visual Safety founded to sell Health & Safety Law Posters.

    2000

    Owners of NBB and CMUK merge businesses to form the early foundations of Poole Bay Holdings.

    2001

    CMUK, launches Eureka Direct First Aid catalogue.

    2001

    Eureka and NBB launch first websites.

    2005

    Over 4 million catalogues mailed in one year by Poole Bay Holdings’ trading divisions.

    2007

    Poole Bay Holdings group officially formed.

    2007

    National indoor smoking ban comes into force. Orders for NBB smoking shelters and cigarette bins skyrocket.

    2007

    Eureka! receives its biggest ever order (IKEA £700,000).

    2007

    JustGloves launches, quickly becoming the UK's leading online supplier of disposable gloves.

    2008

    FirstAid4Less website launch.

    2009

    MediSupplies website launch.

    2013

    NBB Recycled Furniture and Recycled Plastic Furniture Manufacturing Unit launch. We are excited about what manufacturing in-house means for customer service. We quickly become the market-leading manufacturer of outdoor recycled plastic furniture.

    2013

    Our 100th employee joins the team.

    2014

    Between 2008 and 2014, we launched 15 new sites following our company philosophy.

    2015

    1,000,000th order since Poole Bay Holdings launch.

    2016

    Screen and Digital Printing Manufacturing Unit opens.

    2017

    We exceed our target of launching 500 new product ranges, in a single year, across the group.

    2018

    Axent Workwear acquired. Embroidery Manufacturing Unit opens for bespoke and personalised workwear.

    2020

    The pandemic hit & we were able to keep up with demand for urgently needed PPE.

    2020

    Our staff started working from home during the pandemic and worked incredibly hard to keep up with fast lead times and high demands for outdoor Recycled Furniture & Hygiene/Medical products.

    2021

    First Aid 4 Sport acquired.

    2022

    Attended the grand opening for the Lavender Garden at Bournemouth Hospital & had the honour of meeting King Charles, telling him all about our sustainable recycled plastic furniture we donated to the garden.

    2022

    PBH Medical brand launches. We start to offer various hygiene products of our own, including wipes and sanitiser.

    2022

    Poole Bay Holdings moves its head office, manufacturing units and warehouse to its newly fitted and designed Poole site.

    2022

    Koolpak launches the UK's first Instant Cold Pack manufacturing unit.

    2022

    EcoCentric launches becoming the UK's first B2B eco-friendly product specialist online.

    2022

    Our 200th employee joins the team.

    Beginnings

    How it all began


    The beginnings of Poole Bay Holdings are based on two companies selling very different products but that were perfect for direct marketing.

    The first company, The No Butts Bin Company (NBB) which was founded over 30 years ago in 1993. Very much a family affair, the business was founded by Martyn Bright with his wife Suzanne and run from their home in Barnet, London. Using a combination of product cards, magazine advertising and direct marketing NBB was the first company to sell outdoor cigarette bins. It became very successful, creating a new market many years ahead of its time, when more and more companies were banning smoking indoors. NBB followed the cigarette bins with the launch of a range of Smoking Shelters, of which thousands have subsequently been sold in the UK, USA, Germany and France. The No Butts Bin Company USA is based in Madison, Connecticut and is now over 25 years old. Sometime in 1994, NBB began selling their cigarette bins through a catalogue company of which Mike McKenna was the Marketing Director and a future friendship was formed.

    Seven years later after the beginnings of NBB, in January 2000, together with his wife Fiona McKenna (now Poole Bay Holdings Sales Director), Mike McKenna launched CMUK Visual Safety selling health and safety law posters in Banbury, Oxfordshire. Another family affair, the company was formed in response to the government deciding that all companies needed to change their old health and safety law posters by June 2000. Within two months of the business’s launch, CMUK was receiving hundreds of orders per day. On one particular day Fiona opened post bags to find over 700 orders that needed sorting and processing – together with telephone and fax orders over 1000 orders were processed on that day alone. To cope with the rush, other members of the McKenna family were seconded to help pick and pack thousands of posters. In March 2000, due to the sheer volumes of of orders were being processed and lack of space, it was decided to switch the fulfilment of the posters to NBB’s premises in Poole Dorset. By July 2000, CMUK had built a database of 40,000 customers and passed £1 million in sales. However, by September of 2000, sales of the law posters were rapidly diminishing and it was clear that CMUK needed to find other products to market.

    As the 40,000 law poster customers had bought a product to comply with the law it was decided to launch a catalogue known as Eureka Direct selling compliance products. The catalogue specialised in selling safety and first aid supplies as legally all businesses in the UK needed to ensure their employees had access to a first aid items in the event of an accident. As a result yet another Poole Bay Holding niche business was born!

    • From the outset Poole Bay Holding (PBH) has specialised in developed niche product businesses.
    • PBH is known for its excellent customer service, offering comprehensive ranges at reasonable prices.
    • Our team of over 200 fantastic staff make it their mission to ensure we are the very best in everything we do.
    Getting Online

    The first 10 years


    A number of Poole Bay Holdings businesses were amongst the early adopters of ecommerce. In 2001 Eureka Direct and The No Butts Bin Company launched their first websites which were instant hit.  Prior to the websites most Poole Bay Holdings customers still ordered from paper catalogues with telephone support or by faxing or posting an order form. In fact, by 2005, PBH had mailed over 20,000,000 catalogues. But then the Internet arrived and it all began to change…..

    With a website, we didn’t need to pay for costly print reruns when prices changed or adding new products. It’s was easier to run an automated product update on our websites and share the news via emails. More importantly for our customers, we were able to cut costs and work more efficiently too. While we still mail over 1 million catalogues per year, but most of our business is now online.

    About Us

    Twenty years of growth


    Poole Bay Holding second decade was filled by numerous achievements and milestones. In 2011 we added our metal fabrication and powder coating factory to manufacture Cycle/Smoking Shelters and many other related facility products. By 2013 Poole Bay Holdings was now employing 100 people and within just two years we processed our one millionth order. In 2014 we began manufacturing recycled plastic outdoor furniture and within nine years we had become one of the UKs largest manufacturers and marketers via www.RecycledFurniture.co.uk  In 2015 we launched www.SafetySigns4Less.co.uk and subsequently our screen and digital printing sign factory. In 2018 we purchased Axent Workwear a local  business that specialised in embroidering workwear. The rapid expansion of our manufacturing division increasingly meant we were able to offer our customers 1000s of niche products Made in Britain. This  reducing our dependence on Far East suppliers and, we were able to provide dozens of jobs locally. Throughout the decade, we continued to launch new niche websites that complimented our business model. From 2010 to 2019 Poole Bay Holdings enjoyed tremendous growth and doubled in size. Then, the pandemic hit….

    Covid-19

    The impact of the pandemic


    World trade routes suffered as China closed down amid rumours of a new threat to public health. Public fears and the emerging medical picture meant life could not continue as normal. Precautions reserved for the operating theatre became part of everyday life as we all learned to live with Covid.

    At the start of the pandemic, the team at Poole Bay Holdings already had years of expertise delivering medical supplies to businesses, schools and other organisations. So, in 2020, we were able to quickly launch our own medical brand offering a comprehensive range of wipes, sanitisers and medical products to the UK’s high standards.

    By the end of Covid’s third wave, our team had learned to work remotely wherever possible while continuing to manufacture our essential business supplies. As office numbers were down, we took the opportunity to find a new home for the business: one where we could bring together the head office with the manufacturing units and our warehouse.

    Where We Are Now

    Poole Bay Holdings Today


    May 2022 saw us move into our new Poole, Dorset headquarters. Vikki Slade kindly opened the complex for us with local press sharing our story on LinkedIn Dorset Biz News and in the Echo.

    As Councillor Slade said, we’re “the biggest local employer you’ve never heard of.” Our 200th new colleague joined us in 2022, helping us cement our position as one of Dorset’s best places to build a career.

    Our new site houses all the head office teams, our manufacturing units, and our extensive warehouse.

    Our future looks bigger and brighter. In 2022, we launched EcoCentric, the UK’s only B2B eCommerce eco-friendly site, and we have ambitions to launch 3 or 4 more websites every year.

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