Our Journey

Our journey

Discover our forty-year story of how we've gone from small beginnings to supporting the world's biggest companies.

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1983

Founder Jonathan Aris launch­es Tow­er. Our first head­quar­ters is just a small garage on Tow­er Road in Bournemouth. We lat­er buy our first stor­age ware­house as the com­pa­ny begins to grow.

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1984

A new cus­tomer, New For­est Dis­trict Coun­cil, is acquired. Sup­ply­ing them with paper tow­el prod­ucts, it is Tower’s first mul­ti-site cus­tomer, which means we would be ser­vic­ing dif­fer­ent key depots.

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1985

Julian Aris, one of Jonathan’s three broth­ers, joins the com­pa­ny. Julian adds his prod­uct devel­op­ment, brand­ing exper­tise, and mar­ket­ing knowl­edge as we dou­ble in size in just two years. 

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1986

A land­mark moment for Tow­er as we move into our first dis­tri­b­u­tion cen­tre in Bournemouth. It is only three years in, and we now require 10,000 sq. ft. of ware­house space to sup­ply customers.

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1987

A third broth­er of Jonathan, Daniel Aris, joins Tow­er to sup­port his two sib­lings. Daniel enters after com­plet­ing a pres­ti­gious appren­tice­ship that he had been attend­ing since leav­ing school. 

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1990

The Tow­er Team has grown to sev­en peo­ple, and we now have the expe­ri­ence and knowl­edge to expand even fur­ther into new areas that now include first aid, jan­i­to­r­i­al, and clean­ing products.

Warehouse

1992

Fur­ther growth neces­si­tates anoth­er move, this time into a pur­pose-built dis­tri­b­u­tion hub on Yarrow Road in Poole. This pro­vides not only more space, but room for fork­lifts to move and new racking.

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1995

We become a spe­cialised sup­pli­er for mar­itime indus­tries, pro­vid­ing ven­dor man­aged inven­to­ry and becom­ing syn­ony­mous with great ser­vice to docks across the South Coast of the UK.

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1996

We launch into work­wear and uni­form, intro­duc­ing our Bear’ range of durable wear­able prod­ucts, the first of which is Bear­Grip’ boots. Today, we have Bear’ prod­ucts in sev­er­al PPE categories.

Breathe3

1997

Nick Aris joins Tow­er to expand the team even fur­ther. Nick brings unique prod­uct knowl­edge to help grow the com­pa­ny before going on to start his own busi­ness, Breathe Safe­ty Ltd, in 2001.

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2001

We move into our cur­rent head­quar­ters on Yarrow Road, Poole, after years of sus­tained growth increas­es the need for stor­age space. We also estab­lish our first office block in the company.

Britannia Azura

2003

We start one of our most impor­tant part­ner­ships with one of the world’s largest cruise lines, Car­ni­val UK. We quick­ly prove our­selves to be a leader in the on-time in-full sup­ply model.

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2005

Tow­er is cer­ti­fied to ISO 9001, the qual­i­ty man­age­ment stan­dard for improv­ing the qual­i­ty of prod­ucts and ser­vices to con­sis­tent­ly meet and exceed our cus­tomers’ expectations.

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2007

We work with Car­ni­val UK and Go-Jo to devel­op, test, and cer­ti­fy a new hand sani­ti­sa­tion régime. It is then adopt­ed by Car­ni­val UK and used glob­al­ly across their fleet of cruise ships.

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2008

Despite the finan­cial crash, we expe­ri­ence fur­ther growth, take our first steps into a nation­al break­out, and launched Equip, the industry’s first ever stand-alone online order­ing platform.

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2009

We enhance our PPE, work­wear and uni­form brand­ing ser­vice by bring­ing it in-house to pro­vide high-qual­i­ty heat seal and embroi­dery from our warehouses.

Fire Bear

2012

We launch Fire­Bear, our brand of flame retar­dant and arc pro­tec­tive cloth­ing designed to meet EN61482, which is the stan­dard for pro­tect­ing work­ers against the ther­mal haz­ards of an elec­tric arc.

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2013

Tow­er is cer­ti­fied to the ISO 14001 envi­ron­men­tal stan­dard. This is a key mile­stone on our sus­tain­abil­i­ty jour­ney that helps us improve our envi­ron­men­tal per­for­mance as a company.

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2014

Our Senior Lead­er­ship Team is put in place, which is an impor­tant step for Tow­er. Each part of our busi­ness now has a sep­a­rate set of goals and strate­gies that lead ini­tia­tives and estab­lish policies.

Distribution centre

2016

We move into our 75,000 sq. ft dis­tri­b­u­tion cen­tre in Holton Heath. This excit­ing ware­house gives us the capac­i­ty to store and dis­trib­ute to tens of thou­sands of bar­cod­ed prod­uct locations.

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2017

Equip is rebrand­ed as Ctrl­Cloud, our inno­v­a­tive elec­tron­ic order­ing por­tal. Ctrl­Cloud gives cus­tomers greater pur­chas­ing pow­er to ensure they get the right prod­uct, at the right price, at the right time.

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2017

Tow­er becomes a mem­ber of the British Safe­ty Indus­try Fed­er­a­tion (BSIF) and its Reg­is­tered Safe­ty Sup­pli­er scheme. We also become a qual­i­fied accred­it­ed sup­pli­er to Achilles UVDB.

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2018

Char­lie Aris becomes CEO as Tow­er joins the BTTG, the Dorset Cham­ber of Com­merce and Indus­try, and become a Dia­mond Exec­u­tive Part­ner of the CLIA (Cruise Lines Inter­na­tion­al Association).

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2020

After the pan­dem­ic hits, we sup­port the cruise indus­try by work­ing with Pub­lic Health and Hotel Teams on the return to ser­vice’ pro­to­cols. We also secure stocks of PPE to ensure no stock-outs.

CTRLFLOW

2021

We devel­op and tri­al our CtrlFlow ECA clean­ing prod­uct, effec­tive against COVID 19, Norovirus, and is a safer alter­na­tive to oth­er dis­in­fec­tants. CtrlFlow sys­tems are installed on Cunard and P&O fleets.

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2022

We grow the team from 102 to 140 peo­ple in just one year, add a new dis­tri­b­u­tion cen­tre in the Dorset region, and launch our Zero Waste tex­tile recy­cling and secure gar­ment dis­pos­al service.

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2022

Tow­er become a trust­ed mem­ber of the Pro­fes­sion­al Cloth­ing Indus­try Asso­ciates world­wide (PCI­AW) and renew our Inter­na­tion­al Marine Pur­chas­ing Asso­ci­a­tion (IMPA) membership.

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2023

Tow­er were named Dis­trib­u­tor of the Year at the annu­al Safe­ty & Health Excel­lence Awards, after an incred­i­ble per­for­mance dur­ing 2022 in cus­tomer ser­vice, inno­va­tion, and sales growth.

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