Steve Bannister – President, BMS Factory

By on April 6, 2016
steve_swan

When and how did you get into your current business?
I started into this business in 1983 after working for large Canadian telecom company. After opening up an adult toy store, I then grew that into distribution while also starting up into manufacturing later on. Today, BMS consists of a retail division, Aren’t We Naughty, with 11 stores, a distribution company, as well as overseas manufacturing to produce our own award-winning products.

A typical day
I’m sure as many people in this industry can agree, there really isn’t a typical day. When I’m in the office, I try to put at least an hour aside every day to respond to emails. I play a very hands on approach in the office and love to be involved. It creates a great environment of creativity and productivity that creates the products we do. When I’m not in the office, I’m usually traveling overseas to visit our factory or on business trips/trade shows.

The most significant influence in my working career was
My two influences in this industry would have to be Susan Colvin of CalExotics and Nick Orlandino. Both of them are masters of what they do and are leaders in this industry. As two of the original founders, they’ve paved the way for companies like BMS and are responsible for creating ANME, one of the industry’s biggest shows. Twice a year, they welcome manufacturers from around the world to come and show their newest products and see what’s new. Their character and work ethic are something that I really respect and am honoured to be in the same industry.

I’m most proud of
I’m most proud of being recognized as the best company with the most powerful vibrations from PowerBullet as well as the original manufacturer to create a virtually seamless 100% silicone finished range of products. This revolutionary new process allowed the user to experiment with their vibrator giving them a full play area and we continue to do this today.

One of the most memorable moments was
Standing up on the podium in Los Angeles at the XBIZ Awards to receive the Sex Toy Company of the Year award in 2012. To be recognized by other people in the industry like that was such a huge honour that I’ll never forget.

Last book I read
Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.

Favourite movie/TV show
I’m a huge Star Trek fan so naturally any of the movies or TV shows in that universe.

What would most people not know about me
A few years ago, I read about a girl in a local newspaper who was abandoned by those that were close to her. I decided to get in contact with her mother after I read her story to see if I could help. It really touched my heart and I wanted to help her and her family out. Her mother was trying to do everything which I can only imagine was very difficult and she deserved a helping hand. She is a promising young girl from Toronto who was set to join the Olympics for gymnastics, she was also a high level piano player and very smart in school. One day, her coach asked her to do a gymnastics move which had never been attempted before which tragically resulted in a traumatic injury for her. She is now confined to a wheelchair but is doing much better. She has turned into a remarkable young woman who did not let her injury hold her back. I’m proud to have gotten to know her.

My favourite place
Golfing in Thailand. I try to go at least once a year.

What I like best about my job
There’s no feeling better than coming up with an idea for a new product, going through the design process and then receiving a working hand-sample – I love that part of my job.

If I could change one thing
I would have gotten to know my father more.

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