You know the name, now get to know the person. Dean Sanger, managing director of Sabur, discusses his talent for burning rubber, wanting to be a paramedic and his bolt-hole on the east coast
When did you start your career in the industry?
From being a young whippersnapper, I’ve pretty much worked in the textile industry all my working life. At the age of 16 I worked three shifts in a textile manufacturing plant, producing textiles for the home furnishing and fashion industries. In 1990 I answered an ad in the Yorkshire Post for a production manager and, despite having no experience in management at the
time, somehow I blagged it. When I started the position we had maybe 20 staff; when I left to start Sabur in 1998 we had close on 200 based over two sites covering nearly 100,000 sq ft.
What’s your most over-used word or phrase?
‘No problem’ – I’m a big believer in ‘for any problem there’s a solution’. From putting square pegs into round holes or pushing water uphill, there’s a solution. I’m never one to be defeated.
Which three words would your friends use to describe your personality?
Funny, personable and loyal (well, I hope that’s what they’d say).
What is your favourite radio station?
I’m a bloke that still has a glove box full of CDs in the car as my music genre covers everything from country to punk with a bit of 2 Tone and New Romantics thrown in for good measure. But if I had to name the station that’s on the most, it would be Union Jack Radio.
Tomato ketchup or brown sauce?
Difficult one, I couldn’t give a definitive answer as it depends on the dish. But, bacon needs brown, bacon and sausage also needs brown, but throw an egg into the mix and all hell is let loose – bring on the red.
What was the last book you read?
Sad to say I am not a big reader. I’ll read through trade and car magazines, but to be truthfully honest my last fully read book would have been at school, sorry.
What’s your party trick?
I don’t really have a party trick. I can, however, make a rear-wheel-drive car do figure of eights and leave a trail of burning rubber on the ground.
What’s your greatest ambition?
My greatest ambition would quite simply be to keep building the Sabur brand and continue the growth that we have continually had over the last 21 years.
What’s your guilty pleasure?
I have a holiday home near the east coast that we frequent most weekends. It’s my ‘get to’ place after a week of nose against the grindstone.
Is there another job that you’ve always wanted to do?
I love what I do now, I continually meet extremely knowledgeable and successful people from within the industry and one day is never the same as the previous. However, as a young man I always wanted to be a paramedic: driving fast through red lights and saving lives – who wouldn’t?
If you could be anywhere on Earth right now, where would you be?
For me, life is good wherever I am. I have a beautiful wife, family, friends and great work colleagues. However, in answer to your question, I’d be sat in a beach bar in Costa Adeje, Tenerife, considering whether it’s flip-flops or trainers tonight.
Which gadget or app couldn’t you live without?
I think that would have to be my Hive. I can check the heating online before we go to the lodge – if it looks cold simply turn it up so it’s nice and snug when we arrive.
If you could ask one person (living or dead) one question, what would you ask?
That’s easy, my father passed away in 1990 and never saw any of the achievements that I have made in both my business and personal life, so my question would be: “Have I made you proud?”