When Rob Bird founded Paramount Safety Products in 1992 in Perth, Western Australia, he imbued the fledgling company with many of his own admirable personal traits.
Principal among these were honesty, integrity and fair-mindedness. Despite these characteristics being rare in the cut-throat world of business. Rob and his team were able to guide Paramount Safety Products into a successful and highly-competitive business whose growth exceeded their expectations, without compromising his standards.
The operating philosophy at Paramount Safety Products owes much to Rob Bird’s professional and sporting background. As a stock broker in the heady ’60s, ’70s and ’80s, he was not afraid to take a chance on opportunities he thought would succeed. He knew that the burgeoning resources industries would need supplies of personal protective equipment, which lead him into the recycling of gloves.
This tentative foray into PPE resulting in requests for other equipment and so he developed an expanding catalogue of what was to be branded Pro Choice® Safety Gear.
Rob Bird’s competitive nature and sense of fair play was forged in his chosen sport of sailing. He skippered his own Etchell class yacht in many world championships with considerable success. Rob competed in the World Championships for the Etchells class from 1991 until 2009 for a best place of 5th overall. He also won a World Masters title, World Seniors’ title and eight WA state titles.
While meeting his own sporting goals his generosity extended to a sponsorship of the Paralympic sailing movement, by underwriting the team so they could travel to overseas regattas for essential match racing experience.
He was a man who liked, trusted and encouraged everyone he met.
At Paramount Safety Products, Rob was a great believer in rewarding and delegating responsibility to his team. This work environment encouraged great loyalty from his employees and allowed them to blossom as people and professionals.
Paramount Safety Products lost a great leader, mentor and friend when he passed away suddenly in 2010.
He would be content, however, in his knowledge that the personal values he instilled in the company are being upheld. His eldest son Tim has taken over the helm, with another son Will joining a management team that exhibits the same dedication to business success and fair play to all, that was so much a part of Rob himself. He would be proud of his legacy.