VODEX Ltd is a Hampshire-based specialist provider of Fume and Dust extraction systems as well as Electrostatic (ESD) protection products for a wide range of industries across the country.

Our products and specialist solutions are a result of 40 years’ experience in our field. This level of expertise allows us to design, advise, make and install extraction solutions for customers both here in the UK and Internationally. We provide a professional and reliable service that is tailored to the needs of our clients.

Our services are designed to protect people and products at work across a number of industries. We aim to provide our customer base with safe working environments by consistently supplying high-quality products.

VODEX has provided Dust and Fume extraction solutions to industry-leading brands and manufacturers such as Mercedes AMG, Sony, Honeywell, Rolls Royce, Eaton Aerospace, Virgin Racing, Philips, Military and the NHS.

However, we don’t just work with the biggest names in business. We also have a long track record of working with Small Businesses, Education and Training establishments and Government. This has allowed us to build considerable experience in many sectors including Electronics, Manufacturing and Beauty, to name a few.

OUR MISSION STATEMENT

“At VODEX we have a clear purpose to protect people, products and working environments. We achieve this through education and supplying products and services tailored to meet the needs of our customers.

We strongly believe in safer workspaces, and our Dust and Fume extraction systems are designed for just that.”

OUR HISTORY

Co-Founders Poala Taylor-Riddick and Paul Riddick founded VODEX Ltd in Poala’s small garage in Southampton, Hampshire in January 2011.

The company started because Poala felt unwell after visiting a beauty salon.

Sounds strange? Here’s how it happened.

Poala had had a successful career in Financial Services cut short when she was made redundant. However, she was not someone who could sit idle so her mind was whirring with ideas for a new beginning.

One day, she went to get her nails done at a beauty salon. When she came out, she realised she was feeling nauseated and had a headache.

That was her personal encounter with the damaging effects of fume and dust in a workplace.  She spent the next 18 months researching and speaking with many nail technicians and salon owners along with various medical experts, all of whom had carried out studies on the effects of exposure levels of dust and fumes in a workplace environment.

She also spoke to a number of ladies who had experienced miscarriages, and been diagnosed with various cancers due to exposure to workplace fumes.  It became very clear to her she had to do something to help and made it her mission to raise awareness of the dangers of working without proper extraction.

The whole experience got her thinking, and she asked Paul Riddick if there was a product that could take out the bad smells and dust from salons.
She had a very good reason for asking Paul, of all people…

…here’s why.

Paul has a reputation as a Fume and Dust Extraction Product Specialist – a reputation he has built up over 40 years.

He started out as an apprentice trained Mechanical & Production Engineer at Marconi Instruments at the age of 17. Once he gained his OTC and HTC, he progressed to the design drawing office.

Then, he went on to become an Apprentice Training Instructor, and then a Senior Production Engineer.

After 10 years with the company, Paul moved to Trumpf Machine Tools as a CNC Programming and Customer Trainer.

His first sales role was with OK Industries (which later became Metcal) as a Field Sales Engineer.

After 3 years, he was headhunted to join a Fume and Dust Extraction start-up company called Purex, where his ideas started becoming very profitable.

At this point, he realised he’d rather use his skills to make money for himself rather than someone else.

This is when he started his first fume and dust extraction solutions company, KleenAir, with an old work colleague. Paul was in his element here, designing and manufacturing a wide range of extraction products.
The company became so successful that only after 3 years, Metcal (then OKi) bought it so it could start its own range of fume and dust extraction products.

According to the terms of the buyout, Paul was taken on as a Global Fume and Dust Extraction Product Specialist and European Distribution Manager.

After the contract period was satisfied, two ex-directors from OKi approached Paul. They wanted him to join them as they set up an Electronics Distribution Company where he was offered the role of the Technical Sales Director.

This company went from a brand-new entity to one that was worth £1.8 million.

However, at this point, Paul decided to use his technical knowledge and experience to once again build his own Fume and Dust Extraction Solutions Company. He wanted to have the freedom to design, advise, make, and install extraction solutions for customers all over the world.

So, Poala’s question came at the right time.

Paul obviously knew of a range of fume extraction solutions. He had been selling fume extraction products to all kinds of industries, especially Electronics Manufacturing, to remove solder fumes.

Extraction had become a legal requirement in manufacturing facilities after a fatality, caused when an employee was exposed to hazardous contaminants. As a result, Paul had mobile extraction units that would have served the purpose perfectly.

However, they were not ‘pretty’ enough to be in a beauty salon.

With help from Poala, Paul managed to make these aesthetically pleasing for the beauty industry.

And that is how VODEX started.

2011

Vodex received first official order in January 2011.

2012

The Vodex office is moved to Romsey Basepoint.
3 months later: Poala recruited her first employee
7 months later: Paul joined the business full time

2013

Vodex moved to a larger office space with warehouse.

2014

Continued growth leads us to move to a purpose-built commercial building in Bishops Waltham, our current office.

2015

The business became a true family business when Poala’s eldest daughter, Natasia, joined the marketing team.

2016

Two new employees including Parris, who is Poala’s youngest child.

2017

Two new additions covering Accounts and Technical sales roles.

2018

Vodex grew to a total of 9 employees.

2019

After another really successful year we felt the need to bring in outside help to assist with our marketing projects. We were also looking for help, with building a more customer friendly website, after many interviews and presentations with many local agencies we were very proud to recruit the expert services of the very clever people at One2Create. Having met with David and Rosie Harris the two co/owners and directors of the team we felt we had found a group of people that totally understood our vision and could see where we wanted to take Vodex.

2020

Well what a year for everyone around the globe. Covid struck and we had to close our doors in March for several months with only skeleton staff making sure our NHS and Military customers still received their goods. When businesses were allowed to start working again we adapted our working environment and allowed staff to work from home. It wasn’t an ideal situation but we struggled through and came out the other side. Our gratitude to all our very wonderful and loyal customers, who were very patient during the year enabling Vodex to pull through.
During lockdown we received hundreds of calls from Dentists around the UK asking if we could help them get back to work in their Dental Surgeries for Aerosol Generating Procedures (AGPs). Paul designed and manufactured our own custom product with a product called DentalAIR-UVC with the help of Neil DuPreez from Leighton Buzzard Dental Surgery and Paul Liano from Tangmere Dental. A product that then underwent rigorous independent testing, being peer reviewed by Newcastle University and the positive results now published and in the public domain.
Paul was asked by HEALTH EDUCATION ENGLAND to do several 1 hour educational talks via zoom to several hundred NHS dentists on the importance of having good ventilation, air quality and how to reduce fallow times for AGPs in their dental practices.

2021

With Vodex growing from strength to strength we knew we needed more hands to help so we welcomed several new members to the team.

Andy - Product Manager who comes with a wealth of Fume Extraction and ESD knowledge after 25 years’ experience at Metcal and Bofa International.

Karen - Account Manager with over 22 years Head of Finance experience and Tax training to her name

Barry - Sales Manager, bringing over 40 years Fume and Dust Extraction experience to the team with a huge array of knowledge on different systems for various applications

Tazmin – Order Processor. Taz works methodically bringing her vast administrative and organisational skills to the team. She is a key player between customer and manufacturing and liaises with the team to keep customers up to date with their orders.

Seth – Store Manager is highly organised and works with the utmost precision, making sure our warehouse is kept immaculate. He ensures that customers goods are all checked before being packaged ready for shipment onto our customers all around the globe.

2022

We welcomed Julie who is a much-needed administrator and valued member to the office team.

2023

We are looking forward to launching two new products to the Vodex portfolio this year.

Present day

As of today, after a lot of blood, sweat, tears, time, and dedication, VODEX is a business made up of fantastic people, all of whom are proud to be a part of it!

CHARITIES

We are associated with a select few charities that we feel strongly about. These are:

Asthma UK

Oakhaven Hospice

Waggy Tails