Following the completion of his degree in Agricultural Science at Glasgow University, Peter felt that he was not cut out to be a researcher.
Peter’s professor knew the Manager of Rentokil in Glasgow, so arranged for an interview for him and he was offered the job.
Peter was the first graduate sales person in Rentokil UK and he ended up in London where he did well and was singled out for promotion. He decided that he should get some overseas experience first and accepted a position at Rentokil Australia, not realising how far away Australia was. He and his pregnant wife were flown to Australia on an assisted immigrants’ package of £10 each, which was paid by Rentokil.
Peter started to work for Rentokil in Sydney under the leadership of Doug Tristram, Manager of Powells Pest Control. In those days Powells Pest Control, Houghton and Byrne, Flick and Thomas Cowan were the major companies in pest control.
Because of his technical knowledge, one of his jobs was to build up the technical expertise of the company. He also was to specialise in sales, particularly in the commercial area.
In 1967, Rentokil took over Houghton & Byrne and there was an amalgamation of Houghton & Byrne staff and Powells Pest Control staff.
Peter now set about building up the company from a commercial point of view. Peter and Fred Westphal did a great amount to change the face of commercial pest management in Australia. They built a training office next door to the Rentokil Head Office and they ran seminars for groups of clients and prospects. These became extremely successful and popular.
Peter worked for Rentokil from 1966 to 1979 when he decided to move to Flick. He had dealt with Flick a great deal during his years at Rentokil and he liked what he saw. The move created some shock waves within the industry as he was very much looked upon as part of Rentokil.
Peter had to work hard to gain the confidence of the staff at Flick, especially when it came to the treatment of termites. Some members of staff were convinced he was a spy for Rentokil and that he was going to report back to Rentokil on how Flick kill termites. Eventually he gained their trust.
During his period at Flick, Peter went from being Technical Manager to Group Technical Sales Manager where he had marketing and sales responsibilities and was in charge of training 400 people from all around Australia, both on the sales and technical side.
In 1986 the Flick family sold the company to CIG/BOC. The emphasis at CIG was occupational health and safety and crisis management. Falling profit margins led them to sell the business to a French company called La Grande Companie d’eau. Along with many other members of staff, Peter was made redundant following the sale.
On being made redundant, Peter decided that it was a good time for set up his own business. Ever since setting up his own business in 1995, Peter has been very busy and has never looked back.