Good chemistry wins BSI award


25 May 2003

BSI Beacon Award 2003 presented at BSI AGM, Chiswick headquarters, London

Today The BSI Beacon Award 2003 for Best Practice by an SME was awarded to Microbiological Solutions Ltd (MSL), a science-based consultancy service company. MSL demonstrates that even a 'two-man band' can gain the respected ISO 9001:2000 certification.

MSL provide a testing laboratory for toiletries, cosmetics and water hygiene for the leisure industry - a customer base that demands high standards from its suppliers.

The dynamic duo consists of two directors: Angela Davies, the technical director and Ian Smith, the general business manager, who own the company in equal shares. The two made gaining ISO certification a central part of their business planning.

Managing partner Angela Davies says: "We looked at all the main certification bodies. BSI was the only company that provided an accredited system that suited a small business such as ours. The others did not offer the services and the help as they were more geared to bigger companies with much larger systems. We received a much more personal approach from BSI.

"I have worked with quality systems in large companies for many years and felt as a small business we needed help to get focused. This enabled us to get our systems and processes standardised so everybody understands how we operate. We invite clients to come in and look at the lab to assure them the systems and processes are in place for us to carry out our work in a precise, consistent and controlled manner."

Nick Moy, BSI managing director, comments: "This award is important as it clearly demonstrates to the SME business community that organisations of any size can achieve high quality management systems. MSL is an early adopter of ISO 9001:2000 because it placed a high value on making the adoption of management systems standards central to their business success.

"SMEs have an extra incentive to achieve this latest certificate because the standard was changed to become less bureaucratic and focuses more on customer satisfaction. The updated standard will be of real benefit to smaller companies who feel compliance was previously too complicated and time intensive."



Media Enquiries:

Wilma Tulloch on +44 (0)20 8996 6330 OR
Marc Edney on +44 (0)20 8996 6330

Editors' Notes

The International Organisation for Standards (ISO) regularly updates all standards. ISO 9001:2000 was created after feedback from UK business illustrated the shortcomings of the old standard, introduced in 1994. ISO 9001:2000 has three distinct new benefits:

  • less red tape
      - companies will find it easier to show that they meet the requirements of the updated standard
  • focus on customer satisfaction
      - the updated standard helps companies ensure that customer satisfaction is central to their operation, making them more competitive
  • more flexible
    - the updated standard is more flexible, enabling companies to run quality management systems the way that is most relevant to them


BSI Group believes in the universal adoption of best management practices, reduction of risk throughout the trading process and the harmonisation and acceptance of international standards by consent as a means of achieving economic prosperity and releasing the potential in all businesses to deliver excellence.

Founded in 1901 in the UK the BSI Group is now a global company made up of five complementary business units:

  • British Standards, the UK's national standards body, is based in London, UK. It creates and updates national and international standards, reflecting the needs of stakeholders, including UK businesses and consumers.
  • Business Information, a provider of information on standards and associated material.
  • Management Systems, a provider of certification to management systems is based at BSI's headquarters in the UK. Following the 2002 purchase of the North American systems assessment business of KPMG, BSI Inc, based in Reston, Virginia, is the largest company providing management systems certification in North America. Management Systems also has regional headquarters in Hong Kong to service the network of offices in the Asian-Pacific region.
  • Product Services, based in Hemel Hempstead, UK, provides product-testing and awards Kitemark conformity certification and CE marking. The Kitemark is a BSI registered trademark.
  • Inspectorate, the leading independent inspection and analysis company, joined the BSI Group in 1998. Inspectorate has its main offices in Witham, UK; Houston, Texas and Singapore.

BSI Group is an international provider of services to businesses and other organisations. All our business units are working to the same vision of supporting business improvement and trade world-wide. Through provision of standards, technical information, systems assessment, product testing and commodity inspection services, BSI supplies vital third-party services that enable its customers to trade effectively and to improve their operations and products.

In 2002 the Group's turnover was £232.8 million (US$370 million).

Sir David John KCMG, group chairman BSI Group, was appointed in July 2002.

For further information about BSI, please visit our website:


Microbiological Solutions Ltd is a science based consultancy, service provider, and testing laboratory. Its primary role is the microbiological analysis of product for the Toiletries and Personal Care Product industries: items such as shower gels, face and body creams, shampoos, conditioners and raw materials are subjected to a variety of tests to show their compliance with current EU Directives. It also offers a range of other services such as on-site hygiene monitoring of plant, equipment and process waters, HACCP, Audit, and staff training in all aspects of hygiene control.

MSL is a niche player in the toiletries industry focusing on client support. It makes microbiological testing of products an accessible solution for the small to medium size manufacturer as well as providing a wealth of knowledge to larger manufacturers. The people who work for the company and those who work in association with it provide over 150 years of combined experience in microbiology. They have forged extremely close ties over the first two years of trading with leading academics and private researchers who contribute to the value of the service offered.

MSL has also spent the past twelve months developing a hygiene monitoring programme for the swimming pool and health club industry. This service contract, developed in association with a local health club, ensures that leisure managers meet current industry guidelines and help to provide a clean and safe bathing environment. The programme of work entails on site swabbing of key areas and the regular sampling of pool and spa waters.