KEVIN BYRNE, BCAb
Kevin founded Checkatrade.com 20 years ago after a tornado caused £10m of damage to his home town. Sadly, individuals were not only victims of the weather, but some also quickly became victims of rogue traders.
He devised a way of differentiating between the reputable tradespeople and companies separating them from rogue traders and cowboy builders. Checkatrade.com has protected communities across the UK and has saved consumers an estimated £50m by avoiding these rogues. Kevin pioneered on-line reviews and introduced a very strict vetting criteria for membership, which is now in partnership with 10 trading standards authorities across the country.
Due to Kevin’s passion and commitment, Checkatrade.com has become an industry leader, setting an example for traders that can be trusted. Kevin grew the company to 320 staff, and during 2017 was indirectly responsible for generating over 9,500 new trade employment positions generating £3.5 billion for the UK economy. He has now started the Byrne Family Foundation, which currently has £4.5 million earmarked for good causes.
His idea has changed the way an unregulated sector operates, giving consumers confidence to assess the validity of tradespeople. This model has served the community well, especially valuable to vulnerable individuals who require repairs to their home.
Nominated by: Brett McLean