Local Product Designer Takes Centre Stage on National TV

Last night, Ross Kemp who works at local company, Vax, appeared on BBC Three as part of a series which gives young entrepreneurs a boost with their business ideas.

Ross, a junior product designer with Vax, the UK’s best-selling floorcare brand, landed a coveted position on Be Your Own Boss. The BBC Three program sees Innocent Smoothies founder, Richard Reed, choose budding talent to invest up to £1million in.

Ross’s idea of the Asap watercraft originated from a project at Loughborough University, where he studied Industrial Product Design. He designed an electric power assisted alternative to a jet ski which would allow lifeguards to reach those in the water more quickly and ultimately save more lives.

Ross took time off his work at Vax to develop Asap watercrafts into a business and a product ready for manufacturing for Be Your Own Boss. He has now returned to Vax where he designs floorcare products and continues to work on Asap watercrafts in his spare time.

Ross said:

“I’m delighted to have made it this far in the process. Vax were great with allowing me time off work to foster my skills and business knowledge and I made some great contacts to get my product off the ground. I’m now working with lifeguards in South Africa, and meeting and receiving advice from Richard Branson was definitely a highlight.”

Paul Bagwell, Director of New Product Development (NPD) at Vax, who also appeared on the show said:

“I was happy to allow Ross time out of the NPD team here to explore this exciting opportunity. Although we missed him in the team, I knew he’d return with improved design skills which he can apply to designing products at Vax.

“Vax provides innovative and customer-focused design in the UK, so we jumped at the chance to be part of a program which fosters these values.”

A succession of exciting new products has made Vax the fastest growing floorcare business in Europe – growing more than 10 fold over the last decade. Headquartered in Birmingham, the company has doubled the size of its UK team in the last two years and is currently recruiting 100 new product designers and engineers to support the next phase of growth.


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Notes to editors:

Be Your Own Boss airs on BBC Three on Wednesday 20th September at 9pm.

To learn more about the Asap water crafts, visit www.asapwatercrafts.com

About Vax: Established in 1977, Vax is the UK’s number one floorcare brand. Vax’s headquarters are located in Birmingham, England, and its floorcare products are distributed worldwide. Vax has a growing international footprint, extending across Europe, North America, the Middle East and Australia. Its product portfolio offers a comprehensive range of carpet washers, vacuum cleaners, steam cleaners, hard floor cleaners and solutions. Vax UK is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hong Kong based TechTronic Industries Co.Ltd. (TTi) TTi is a market and innovation leader in power equipment products, floor care appliances, laser and electronic products. The Group recorded sales of US$3.7 billion in 2011.

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