Jane Banks - ASB Business Award Winner 2017


Happy customers make me do a happy dance
- when no one’s looking of course!        

What is your current role within the company?

Founder and owner. And chief cook and bottlewasher too!

LaserFlair is a laser cutting and engraving contract manufacturing business, so I do all the production myself in-house as well as handling enquiries and all the admin.

What is your background prior to working for this company/setting up your company?

My degree was Chemistry with Medicinal Chemistry which took me into large scale chemical manufacture in a product management role. I loved it! My favourite job after that was New Product Development Manager at Curtis Fine Papers, Guardbridge. I really enjoyed project management in a manufacturing environment, and as I’ve always loved making things, it was perfect for me. So when I was looking to start a business, I wanted to find a way of making things. Laser cutting and engraving seemed like a perfect way to do so cost effectively on a small scale. 

What makes your company and/or your role stand out?

The variety of projects that I work on is incredible, from making signs to engraving beard trimming scissors! Everything that I do is contract manufacturing, so I am only limited by customers’ imaginations and my machine’s capabilities.

LaserFlair’s website doesn’t look as you might expect for this kind of business. It’s filled with photos, blogs, case studies and video showing what I do and how I do it to inspire customers.

And I share a lot of my projects and day to day work on social media with customers’ permission to show what’s possible.

What is your area of expertise / inspiration?

My machine is especially good at cutting wood cleanly without dirtying the face, and I can cut through 9mm ply, mdf and Perspex. The machine bed is large and height adjustable, so I can fit in large and thick sheets of materials. And I work with a wide range of materials from formica, card and fabric to stainless steel, mylar and rubber.

I’m happy to work on one-off projects, and work with customers from start ups to blue chip companies.

What are your plans for the future?

I’d like to build my customer base and keep myself as busy as I want to be. Being in control of everything and working from home maximises flexibility and peace of mind for me, and keeps risks manageable. This helps me sleep at night.

What inspires or motivates you?

Doing a great job for my customers, and making a living for myself in a way that I enjoy gets me out of bed looking forward to the day ahead. That’s what it’s all about. Happy customers make me do a happy dance when no one’s looking of course! You know what they say - no customers, no business.