Name: Paul Moore.

Age: 50.

What is your business called?

DTGen (we re-branded from Dieselec Thistle Generators during 2019 to reflect the future direction of the business).

Where is it based?

Our head office is in Milngavie, Glasgow; and we also have a midlands base in Birmingham to serve our customers in England.

What services does it offer?

We supply, install and maintain emergency standby power generators, as well as combined heat and power plant.

Our service department supports mission-critical and life-safely equipment, for example, standby power for NHS hospitals, and so has remained busy throughout lockdown.

The power solutions side of the business, which deals with new installations has been on hold, with around £4m of sales delayed until 2021. As a result, we quickly furloughed 45 members of staff, and had to transition those remaining to home-based roles, making the most of paperless systems and technology to keep in touch and ensure the business kept moving.

To whom does it sell?

Hospitals, scientific/medical research, data centres, commercial and financial buildings, utilities, prisons, MoD, retail distribution – UK wide and internationally.

What is its turnover?

£16.5 million.

How many employees?


When was it formed?

Dieselec Generators was founded in 2004, then acquired Thistle Generators in 2010 to form Dieselec Thistle Generators. We re-branded as DTGen during 2019.

Why did you take the plunge?

Since being in the generator industry for as long as I can remember, I felt I had the knowledge and experience to do it myself. I was very ambitious and I believed I could create my own success.

What were you doing before you took the plunge?

I worked for Thistle Generators for 18 years, joining as an apprentice engineer and rising through the ranks to sales director. I went out on my own in 2004 forming Dieselec Generator. Then In 2014, with the help and support of my equity partner Nevis Capital, we acquired Thistle Generators.

How did you raise the start-up funding?

I invested all of my savings, sold my car and re-mortgaged the family home.

What was your biggest break?

Achieving authorised dealer status with FG Wilson (a Caterpillar Inc brand) and Caterpillar NI Ltd, the world leading equipment manufacturer, was one of our biggest critical breaks for success. FG Wilson has more than 50 years of experience in the supply of generator sets and is a world leader in providing power . Since 1990, it has supplied roughly 640,000 generator sets around the world - that’s enough combined power generation capacity as the entire UK power grid!

What was your worst moment?

In our line of business, you have to invest huge amounts of time and resources to secure large projects. Sometimes, things can fall through for reasons out-with your control, and this can be very demotivating.

What do you most enjoy about running the business?

Seeing it grow from strength to strength. I especially love team expansion and helping people develop. Last year we opened a new training facility onsite at our Glasgow HQ. ‘The Training Academy’ offers an enhanced resource for staff as well as external clients requiring specialist training. As a business we invest heavily in training, from entry level apprentices right through to senior management and leadership teams.

The business is expanding, and we need staff with greater skillsets across all areas. We are growing our capability to include gas generators and system upgrades as well more large-scale engine work.

What is your biggest bugbear?

The construction sector is a core market for us, and we love working there, but onerous contractual terms and conditions within the industry can be hard to manage.

What are your ambitions for the firm?

We view ourselves as market leaders in Scotland and have plans to extend this nationwide. We are also very aware that we must continue to find new and improved ways to provide resilient power supplies to our customers. We recently launched a new range of environmentally-friendly gas generators and look forward to realising the impact of this new technology.

What are your five top priorities?

1. Cash flow 2. Our people. 3. Our reputation. 4. Nationwide expansion. 5. Evolving the business.

What could the Westminster and/or Scottish governments do that would help?

Enforce standard terms and conditions and payment terms within the construction industry.

The support provided for firms during the coronavirus crisis has been superb, and indeed business-critical. We have made full use of the furlough and Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan schemes.

What was the most valuable lesson that you learned?

Surround yourself with good people who share the same passion and enthusiasm for the company.

How do you relax?

A run or walk and I enjoy social time and holidays with friends and family.