Strategic thinking helps deliver bright future for Staffordshire-based cleaning business

A Staffordshire-based cleaning services business has recently grown into new markets, thanks in part to Keele University’s Innovation Leadership* programme.

Brilliant Hygiene Services Ltd is a commercial and industrial cleaning business, specialising in bespoke cleaning solutions. Formed in 2014 by Ian Campbell, the company works with professional organisations to provide cleaning, building and grounds maintenance services.

However, it wasn’t until 2019 that Ian spotted an opportunity in the market – the distribution of specialist cleaning products to industry – something which he credits the University’s programme with.

“After attending the Innovation Leadership programme at Keele, we were able to think more strategically about the direction of our business,”

said Managing Director Ian.

“Using the tools delivered by the University’s Entrepreneurs in Residence, we were able to think more objectively about various aspects of the business. Using the planning tools learned on the course, the business was able to model growth based on historical data, market research and client feedback, and it was during this phase that we identified an opportunity to supply various industries with specialist cleaning products unique to each industry.”

The company now distributes a wide range of cleaning products to industries such as hospitality, catering, housekeeping, commercial kitchens, automotive, engineering, rail, aerospace, marine and engineering, all from their 2,500 sq ft warehouse in Burton-on-Trent.

When asked whether he would recommend the fully-funded programme to other businesses, Ian said:

“100%, absolutely! Attending the programme was an incredible journey. The quality of teaching was second-to-none and the format, whilst incredibly intense, was fantastically-delivered and gave a real insight into every aspect of business.

“The Entrepreneurs in Residence were specifically matched to each delegate, and the six-month journey saw us all grow as business leaders. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the course, and would thank everyone involved at Keele University for their commitment and hard work in delivering an incredible course.

“Since we embedded the programme’s learning into the business, we’ve increased revenue by 38% and employed a further five full-time employees, and much credit goes to the programme team for helping us achieve this.”

The Mercia Centre for Innovation Leadership aims to equip aspirational business leaders and entrepreneurs with the skills and knowledge to tackle the internal and external challenges of business growth. The programme, consisting of 12 sessions over a six-month period, offers a mix of one-to-one coaching, workshops and interactive sessions covering a range of topics such as marketing, internationalisation and business planning.

The programme is fully-funded and is exclusively open to SME business leaders based in Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire. Applications for the programme’s next cohort, commencing in May 2020, are now being accepted. To find out more information about the programme and to apply, visit

For more information about the business support opportunities offered by Keele University through the Business Gateway, visit

SIH logos including 2020 RE logo 400px *The Mercia Centre for Innovation Leadership (MCIL) programme is delivered through Keele University Science & Innovation Park Smart Innovation Hub (Ref: 32R17P01691) / Innovation Centre 6 which has been part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund as part of the England Growth Programme 2014-2020, the Midlands Engine and Staffordshire County Council with support from the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG) (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit