Sure-Footed Approach Vital in a Fast-Paced Industry; Tony McDonough Meets DAVID MORRIS JONES, Boss of Audio Visual Systems Specialists Tiger AV

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Byline: DAVID MORRIS JONES

OW in his 70th year, David Morris-Jones concedes it might be time to slow down just a little - but retirement is definitely not on the agenda. It is all in the genes, according to the energetic managing director of audio visual systems specialists Tiger AV.

He said: 'My father ran an engineering company from 1940 until 1970, by which time he was just a week short of his 100th birthday.

'I cannot see myself giving up work simply to spend time on my leisure pursuits. Running the the business gives me a great deal of satisfaction.'

The company, which supplies audio-visual systems for both public and private sector clients, was founded in 1997 under the name Jigsaw AV.

However, following a wrangle with a company with a similar name, the Warrington-based firm rebranded in August last year and began trading as Tiger AV.

Said Morris-Jones: 'We set up the company with a five-strong team. Our turnover in the first year was pounds 500,000.

'Eight years later, our team has grown to 26 with an annual turnover of pounds 4m which is symptomatic of how we have developed and strengthened over time in a competitive and fast-paced industry.'

Tiger specialises in the design, supply, installation and maintenance of audio-visual systems in the corporate, medical educational and local government sectors.

It has contracts with schools, colleges and universities, museums and galleries, hospitals, churches, theatres and cinemas, and the emergency services. Its client base includes UCI Cinemas, Manchester United Football Club, Granada Television, the University of Liverpool and Marks & Spencer.

The rump of its customer base is in the North West of England but Morris-Jones is now spearheading an expansion drive across the Pennines.

'The first phase of our growth programme was to concentrate and consolidate in the North West. This has been achieved and we are now entering the second phase which sets our sights on growth and sustainability in th e east Pennine and Yorkshire regions.'

The trained accountant said the key to the firm's success has been the knack of being able to set up and maintain sophisticated audio-visual systems that are easy to use at the point of access. 'Getting that right is critical to our reputation,' he said. 'If you take a teacher in a classroom using a whiteboard. His or her talent is in teaching not in knowing how to use equipment. Teachers need simple equipment that is easy to use and allows them to get their message across to their pupils.

'It is the same thing for the chief executive of a major PLC. If he is doing an important presentation, he doesn't want to waste time worrying about how he is going to use the kit - he just wants to be able to walk in and use it.'

Morris-Jones was born in Liverpool, the son of an chartered accountant. He had ambitions to work in the motor industry but, instead, took his father's advice and followed him into accountancy.

He started his career with well-known accountancy firm KPMG in 1953. …