One-stop shop for spe­cial­ist ser­vices

The Courier-Mail - - BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES - ALIS­TER THOM­SON

FAST-GROW­ING Queens­land com­pany Protest En­gi­neer­ing is well on its way to be­com­ing a one-stop shop for spe­cial­ist en­gi­neer­ing and soil test­ing ser­vices.

The Gold Coast-based com­pany was founded in 2015 by friends Sam Bam­ford and Liam Kelly af­ter they met three years ear­lier while work­ing on an LNG project on Cur­tis Is­land.

Mr Bam­ford, whose back­ground is work­ing in soil test­ing labs, said he im­me­di­ately clicked with Mr Kelly, a for­mer en­gi­neer­ing stu­dent, re­gard­ing their views on the in­dus­try.

“We saw a bet­ter way of do­ing things,” he said. “We wanted to be in­no­va­tive.”

Mr Kelly was the sole full­time worker at Protest af­ter the launch as Mr Bam­ford took on a full-time role as fore­man for Axle’s Earth­mov­ing & Civil Works to pro­vide cash­flow for the fledg­ing busi­ness.

Mr Bam­ford said it started with a fo­cus on soil test­ing, but they soon found there was plenty of de­mand for en­gi­neer­ing ser­vices as well.

Af­ter 12 months, the busi­ness was per­form­ing so well that Mr Bam­ford quit his job and joined Protest in Jan­uary, 2016. He said they gained their first ma­jor client – AE Group Civil & Min­ing Con­struc­tion – that year.

Since the com­pany’s launch, the suite of ser­vices has ex­panded to in­clude geotech­ni­cal, en­vi­ron­men­tal, struc­tural en­gi­neer­ing and drilling ser­vices, con­struc­tion ma­te­ri­als test­ing, traf­fic con­trol and test and tag­ging, and sev­eral large mo­bile lab­o­ra­to­ries for on-site ser­vices.

Last year the com­pany ex­panded to the Sun­shine Coast af­ter work­ing on a project re­lat­ing to the Bruce High­way.

This year new of­fices in Emer­ald and Mel­bourne have fol­lowed thanks to a surge in work in the min­ing and con­struc­tion sec­tors.

Mr Bam­ford said the Emer­ald of­fice would help man­age the busy work­load in cen­tral Queens­land. Next week, the com­pany will break ground on a 30-lot sub­di­vi­sion in Ip­swich.

IN­NO­VA­TIVE: Liam Kelly (left) and Sam Bam­ford at their fac­tory in Burleigh.

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