Play hard, but work harder. That could be the motto for leading signs and digital print specialists Hollywood Monster.
Managing director Tim Andrews leads the firm that successfully mixes investment and growth, with fun and fundraising.
It’s a recipe that has gained the family-run firm a growing reputation for delivering a highly professional service, with a cheeky smile – a difficult balancing act but one it pulls off with aplomb.
Mr Andrews and his fellow directors have invested heavily in building a very strong brand. He devotes a great deal of time and energy working to make sure the name that isn’t easy to forget is, in fact, remembered for all the right reasons.
Highlights for the company include its involvement in producing banners promoting the world’s greatest sporting event – London 2012 – through to its support of a charity established in memory of a remarkable young Birmingham boy.
Originally called Hollywood Signs, the company was set up in 1991 by father and son team John and Tim Andrews, operating from the family loft space in Hollywood, Birmingham. It was in 2009 that a monster was spawned following the merger of two companies – Hollywood Signs and Monster Digital.
Recently, the firm has gone from strength to strength as it invests heavily in people and technology at its Tyseley headquarters, including more than £1 million in new equipment to help it develop and grow the digital print side of the business.
This investment has also put the company at the cutting edge when it comes to producing the enormous banners that made such an impact in London in the summer of 2012.
The company’s long-standing relationship with retail giants Westfield led to Hollywood Monster creating some of Europe’s largest ever banners for the London Games, as part of a £1 million-plus project.
They were installed at Westfield Stratford City and the surrounding area adjacent to the major sporting venues and athletes’ village, and seen by millions of TV viewers around the world. Further major banners were prepared for the Paralympics that followed.
Supporting the investment in people and technology has been a major commitment to the clever use of PR, social media, advertising and marketing. As a result, the brand is now widely recognised.
Hollywood Monster’s PR and marketing campaigns have been supported by online activity through social media networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook.
By interacting with the online business community, the company has been able to connect with potential new clients and journalists, to further boost its profile.
In fact, it was through Twitter that Mr Andrews first came across Harry Moseley – the brave Sheldon schoolboy who raised more than £700,000 for Cancer Research UK despite battling an inoperable brain tumour.
Following Harry’s death, Andrews became a Trustee of HelpHarryHelpOthers (HHHO) – a charity set up by Harry’s mum Georgie to continue her son’s fundraising efforts.
He said: “Harry’s infectious personality and selfless attitude shone through his tweets and the work he did. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to meet Harry, however I intend to carry on his good work in my role as a trustee of HelpHarryHelpOthers.
"Twitter was a great way for Harry to spread the word about his fundraising achievements and allowed him to reach a much wider audience – even earning himself some celebrity fans along the way.”
Hollywood Monster’s support for the charity includes sponsoring and helping to organise the Harry Moseley Charity Ball, taking place again this year at Birmingham’s ICC in October. Last year’s inaugural event raised around £200,000, an amazing figure and a clear demonstration of Mr Andrews’ determination and commitment to the cause.
Well known for his own fundraising efforts, he has taken part in many cycling events. His love for the sport led him this year to launch the 7-in-Seven Big Bike challenge – an initiative designed to encourage thousands of Birmingham people to rediscover the joys of cycling.
The highly ambitious challenge is reaching its climax this week (September 23 to 29) with a group of 30 cyclists riding more than 700 miles across seven countries in seven days, starting in Zurich and ending in Birmingham’s Centenary Square on Sunday.
Around 200 cyclists are expected to accompany the group on the last 30-mile leg of the journey and will be greeted at a major ‘festival of the bike’. Mr Andrews is cycling alongside Blind Dave Heeley and colleagues from across the business community.
He said: “Giving back to the community is enormously important to us, which is why I’m always keen to take part in fundraising events and get involved with local charities like HelpHarryHelpOthers.
"We’re confident our work hard, play hard attitude is a recipe for success and one that is being embraced by everyone associated with Hollywood Monster.”
• The Birmingham Post Business Awards gala night takes place at Edgbaston cricket ground on October 17. The event will be hosted by Natasha Kaplinsky. To book a table, visit bpbusinessawards.co.uk.