How it started
Mal Beacham and Belinda Carlisle (pictured) were working in pathology when they saw the drug and alcohol testing needs of commercial clients were not being met.
So in 2012 they started Safework Laboratories to provide a one stop shop featuring consumables, laboratory analysis, on site collectors and training.
Since then they’ve seen plenty of success, including reaching ninth place in the 2015 Smart50 Awards.
In the past year, Safework Laboratories has added 50 new staff, along with opening two COVID-19 PCR viral labs, and is in the process of building another two. That growth has led to an additional $4 million in revenue in 2020-21 compared to the previous financial year.
Nationally, drug and alcohol testing plummeted since the start of COVID-19, according to the founders.
So they needed find another niche.
They tell SmartCompany: “Mal was able to have the Perth viral laboratory set up within two weeks which is unheard of. With our drug and alcohol business barely surviving, we have since built three viral laboratories and are now a known force during this pandemic.”
Where to next?
Beacham and Carlisle say the next big move is a viral laboratory in Sydney, alongside a brand new toxicology facility.
Then, the plan is to add a viral laboratory in Melbourne alongside a centralised warehouse before further expanding into southeast Asia.