First Line celebrates 40 years of growth and innovation

First Line Ltd. is marking its 40th anniversary in 2023, as the company celebrates its continued commitment to providing customers with a comprehensive range of high-quality, automotive aftermarket components.

Founded in 1983 as Filter International by Peter Joyner and John Madden, the duo are still very much involved in the business today, as they remain owners and key chairholders of the company.

Since the company launched 40 years ago, it has continued to experience a trajectory of growth, with the First Line brand introduced in 1987 to advance its multiple product range portfolio.

To reflect this, its steering and suspension programme was launched in 1992, with an initial 1,000 references in the range, which at the time was the most comprehensive range available.

To this day, First Line remains a market leader and now offers the aftermarket an impressive range of over 9,200 premium quality steering and suspension components as part of its 40,000 references across 60 different product lines.

The company opened its Belfast distribution centre in 2004, before acquiring the well-established, 100-year-old inventors of the practical sliding clutch, Borg & Beck brand, in 2006, which has proved to be a key milestone in the company’s heritage.

Now, with more than 170 employees worldwide and a loyal, international customer base, First Line provides customers with efficient logistics in the UK, Ireland and globally, with products distributed in more than 80 countries around the world, including the the United States, France, Spain, Poland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Australia and New Zealand.

Throughout the past 40 years, First Line says customer service has always remained a priority, and with the business experiencing year-on-year success, it moved to a new 12,000 square metre distribution centre in Banbury, Oxfordshire, in 2012, expanding to 16,000 square metre in 2013 to accommodate demand, while also introducing the Key Parts brand and the Borg & Beck braking line.

Scooping more than 25 awards over the past 40 years, First Line has continued to assess the market and introduce new product categories to meet ongoing demand, including the launch of its commercial vehicle product range in 2016.

Its status as a leading supplier was solidified with the company ranking in the Sunday Times/ HSBC International Track 200 for the third time in four years in 2016, before achieving ISO9001:2015 in 2017.

In 2022, First Line became a Premier Data Supplier to TecDoc, as a result of stringent data quality assessments, and launched a new range of CV joints and driveshafts this year.

To this day, the business still operates with a family-run approach, with managing director Dan Joyner, son of founder Peter Joyner, commenting: “We’re proud of all that we have achieved over the past 40 years – all of which wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our hardworking and loyal employees, suppliers and customer base.

“Innovation has been integral to First Line’s growth, and it’s clear through our constant commitment to evolution that we’re not one to stand still within the market.

“Demand has changed significantly over the years, and by investing heavily in research and development, as well as a key focus on quality, we have been able to provide motor factors and independent garages with reliable ranges that technicians can fit first time.

“With the future looking bright for the sector, it’s important that we have one eye firmly on the future, embracing upcoming trends and technology – adopting this mindset means we can look forward to continuing to support customers for a long time to come.”

Today, First Line Ltd. continues to offer the independent aftermarket an extensive product portfolio of over 40,000 references across more than 60 product lines, distributed via its three established brands: First Line, Borg & Beck, and Key Parts.

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