Passionate about the Safety Deposit Box
People often ask me why I am passionate about safe deposit boxes. Let’s be honest, for most people it may not be the most exciting topic. It’s a steel box with a key?
My background is Military, Anti- Terrorist unit, former head of group security for global freight operator TNT, founder and CEO a global logistics security business. I have been privileged to establish multiple integrated security companies across East and Western Europe, the United States, Malaysia and East Africa. Indeed, my last security company was described, 5 years after I set it up, as the 12th most powerful private security company in the world. I left all that behind me in 2014 and vowed “never again” and so what is it about the concept of a safety deposit box that makes me so passionate about MySafe today.
The answer to that question lies with the (understandable) decision of major banks across the world to distance themselves from the provision of safety deposit box services. In many countries tens of thousands of people had to come to terms with the fact that they could no longer store items of personal value in their local bank branch and for many, there was no realistic alternative but to take the stuff home.
Estimates vary but upwards of 1 million people in Ireland the United Kingdom who stored items of personal value in their local branch found themselves without a comparable service. This led to a real social problem with many people feeling vulnerable at a time in their life when they should have been able to enjoy peace of mind. These circumstances have given rise to a huge change in the industry across the world. The UAE has also been impacted with tens of thousands of clients on the UAE bank waiting lists, some waiting as long as 4 years to secure a box.
For me, creating a simple solution, grounded on global best practice and solving a problem seemed a good excuse to “get back on the saddle” and so it came to pass. Like all simple solutions, it took time to appreciate the social challenges that had been created by the global banks decision to dramatically reduce their involvement in the sector. I wanted to identify the global market leaders who could contribute and create a solution that fills a current and exponentially growing demand. That journey took me across the world in an effort to tie down global best practice and pull all the different components together. The rest was “Simple stuff”
The humble safe deposit box has been around for over 160 years, a steel box with two keys. I wanted to make sure we brought the service into the 21st century and so with MySafe we automated the concept, applied advanced safe robotics, identified the most advanced safe of its kind in the world and built a service grounded on what aspects of the service will empower the client. We took it to the largest Insurance market in the world to seek their support. We came to appreciate that people use a safety deposit box for so many different reasons, some spare cash they want to keep to one side, personal items of jewelry, the wedding dowry, some important personal or corporate documents, hard disk drives, flash disk, items of personal sentimental value…. The list is endless and for each individual client, their need is priceless.
We wanted to provide a SMART service grounded in automation, supported by global experts in their field, 21st century advanced safe robotics, accessible 24 / 7. We wanted the service to be convenient, simple to use, easy to access, totally private and available to residents and non- residents alike.
We wanted to create a service that had clients walking away thinking “why this has not been done before, it so easy, so simple and so convenient”. In the same way that the concept of “convenience ATM’s” changed the way we as an individual manage our daily cash flow, we also wanted to take MySafe into the hearts of communities across the region and transform the way in which people perceived their options to secure items of personal value off site in a convenient, automated accessible facility.
MySafe had the potential to make a real social impact, to add value by creating “SMART” options that empower people in neighborhoods across the region to take reasonable pro-active steps to minimize risk and enhance their peace of mind.
We wanted people to feel comfortable, to appreciate the benefits of removing that risk, to feel empowered to come and go as they please, to interact with their items of personal value at any time day or night in total privacy. We wanted to do it the SMART way and in so doing make a difference in their lives. Not such a bad reason to “get back on the saddle” ……..
Terry Downes, Co-Founder and CEO MySafe Vaults DMCC; email@example.com