BCB International and Radyr Comprehensive School

BCB International, a company tucked away on an industrial estate in Cardiff, was a real find for the BLC Scheme. The company designs and manufactures high quality gadgets and products worldwide for the military.

On the 2nd of November, year 9 pupils from Radyr Comprehensive School were in their element when they visited the company. As the pupils entered,  they were wondering why they had traded their French classroom in for this exciting boardroom which was filled with military uniforms and exciting photography.

Radyr pupils disuss products in French around the boardroom table

However, the pupils didn’t have to wait long to discover the connection. Philippe Minchin, PR Manager at BCB international  promptly explained to the pupils that an ability to speak French is  crucial to the success of the company, which trades in 96 countries.

Philippe went on to tell the pupils that he had recently returned from a trade show in Paris, in which it was vital to speak French when trying to establish relationships with new customers at the show.

The pupils were then thrilled to be given a rare behind the scenes tour of the factory and offices. They even got to see where the cutting edge gadgets for the military are developed!  To the delight of the students , they had now entered James Bond territory!

The group of pupils showed off their language skills when they asked Philippe some question s in French about himself. The pupils were then set the challenge of understanding descriptions in French of 3 products designed by the company!

A Radyr pupil puts the camouflage cream to the test

The boys then got the opportunity to sample the camouflage cream which had been developed by the company! It wasn’t just the eye catching boardroom filled with military uniforms or the range of survival kits and gadgets that they will remember. The pupils will never think again that languages are a boring subject that can only be used in the classroom!

Ryan , a year 9 pupil on the visit said: ”It has been really good to learn of how important it is to learn French for a job. I wasn’t sure about taking a language for GCSE before today but I am going to after today.”

Another year 9 pupils said that the session had shown him “how you would need a language  if you wanted to start your own business and sell to customers all over the world.”

Following the visit, Philippe Minchin said: “We were absolutely delighted to welcome the students to our Headquarters.  During their visit, the students were shown examples of how being able to communicate in foreign languages gives the company a competitive edge.  BCB International trades in 96 countries and communicating in the customer’s native language increases their confidence in the benefits of doing business with us.  I would encourage all language students to keep on learning other languages because language skills are very much sought after in companies like BCB International who operate in International markets.”


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