39. Lifeline 24
The Norfolk-based personal alarm service for the elderly, frail and disabled
Founders: Treena and Simon Budd
Founded: October 2013
After a 10-year stint in the financial sector, Simon Budd moved to Norfolk with his wife Treena and started a job in a local housing association. It was here he came up with the idea to provide a superior alarm and safety service for residents at a lower cost.
The husband and wife team set up Lifeline 24 – a company that supplies personal pendant alarms and keysafes for the disabled, frail and elderly, which are monitored from its UK-based emergency response call centres. The company prides itself in not employing salespeople to sell it products but instead relies on recommendations from friends, family, carers and healthcare professionals. Equipment is rented out to customers, who are then charged a monthly (£12.49 per month) or annual (£128 per year with two months free) monitoring fee depending on their needs.
To date, Lifeline 24 has supplied more than 6,000 customers with its personal alarms; a figure that will help it more than double its turnover in 2016 to nearly £1m – netting a significant profit. On the back of this, the business is planning to fuel rapid international expansion, having already launched in Ireland, the entrepreneurial duo and their 25-strong team now has Australia and the US in their sights.