Burnley and Nelson firms celebrate 40-year partnership

(From left): Laurence OConnor, Managing Director of Financial Affairs; Stuart Fraser, Manufacturing Director of Graham Engineering; and Frank Kelly, Financial Director of Graham Engineering.
(From left): Laurence OConnor, Managing Director of Financial Affairs; Stuart Fraser, Manufacturing Director of Graham Engineering; and Frank Kelly, Financial Director of Graham Engineering.

Two successful local companies have celebrated a business partnership which has stood the test of time for four decades, ringing in the big landmark with a commemorative cake.

The family-owned and operated insurance broker and financial planning firm, Financial Affairs, based in Burnley; and Graham Engineering, a Nelson based firm which works in aerospace and the automotive industry, have been working together since the mid-1970s.

To celebrate the landmark year Managing Director of Financial Affairs, Laurence O’Connor, surprised the staff at Graham Engineering by turning up with a with a cake fitting the occasion.

On their long-standing relationship with Graham Engineering, Laurence said: “At Financial Affairs we’re really proud to have been dealing with Graham Engineering for such a long time.

"We try to look after most things for the company including directors and individual employees as well on a personal level,” he added.

The relationship started in the 1970s between Corry Graham, the owner of Graham Engineering, then an emerging company, and the father of current Financial Affairs, Managing Director Michael O’Connor.

Since then, Graham Engineering has gone from strength to strength and now employs over 180 people at its site in Nelson, while Financial Affairs went on to establish itself as one of the premier insurance and financial planning firms in the region.

Frank Kelly, Financial Director of Graham Engineering, said: “Financial Affairs have been servicing our insurance and pension needs certainly as long as I’ve been here and a lot longer before.

"There’s a relationship that has gone back many years, through generations, with the owner of Graham Engineering and Laurence’s dad," he continued. "They know Graham Engineering intrinsically, which is good because our insurance and pension needs are very specific to the industry.”