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Provident Personal Credit, proud sponsor of Bradford Bulls, is the home credit service of Bradford-based company Provident Financial.
Just like the Bulls, Provident Financial has a rich history dating back to the late 19th century when the company was founded in Bradford by Joshua Kelley Waddilove.
In 1880 Joshua worked as an insurance agent and in the course of his work saw at first-hand how some working class families struggled to pay for essential items such as furniture, clothes and shoes. Joshua realised that something needed to change and devised a system to help families provide for themselves through the use of vouchers which could be exchanged in local shops for clothing, food and coal. The families then repaid the vouchers in small weekly instalments which they could afford.
Word soon spread and demand for the vouchers grew. Joshua opened an office and recruited agents to help collect the repayments, creating the foundations on which, over a century later, Provident Financial still operates.
Growth beyond Bradford
The new company was called Provident Clothing and Supply Co Ltd and by the time Joshua died in 1920 it had grown into a nationwide business with over 5,000 agents operating from a head office in Bradford. In the period since, the business has endured numerous social and economic challenges, notably the Wall Street Crash in 1929, the First and Second World Wars, the trade union strikes of the 1970s and the miners’ strikes of the 1980s.
In 1962, the company was floated on the stock market. One of the biggest events in the company’s history, it marked the transition from private family business to public company under the new name of Provident Financial plc. The flotation was followed by a period of growth for the company as product ranges were expanded to reflect the ever-changing needs of the modern customer. In 1967 a new, larger head office was built on Sunbridge Road, Bradford, to accommodate the increasing number of employees. In 2010 the company moved to a brand new, purpose-built head office in the heart of Bradford city centre.
In 2003, Vanquis Bank started trading and has grown to become a successful credit card provider with 899,000 customers in the UK and 9,000 retail deposit customers.
Today, more than 130 years since it was founded in Bradford, Provident Financial is a FTSE 250 mid-shares company listed on the London Stock Exchange with over 2.7 million customers and 3,780 employees.
Provident in the Community
Playing a positive role in the communities we serve is at the heart of our business. Through our ‘Good Neighbour’ programme, we support local community projects tailored to meet the needs of local residents throughout the UK and in our home of Bradford.
As an example, staff from our Bradford Head Office Staff have made a considerable impact supporting the city's Sedbergh Youth and Community Centre.
With our roots firmly in Bradford for over 130 years, we are proud to get behind the Bradford Bulls and support them in achieving success both for the club and the wider community in Bradford. We are particularly happy to be helping to support the Bradford Bulls Academy programme which develops young talent and has resulted in six of the current first team squad coming from that programme.