Celebrating 40 Years of Innovation

Category: News
Published: 26th June 2024

< Back to Media
Four members of the Red Helix team working together

In 1984, the same year Dell was founded, the first apple Mac was launched, and IBM released the PC Jr., Phoenix Datacom was formed in the living room of the founder in Buckinghamshire. The company started selling the telecommunications analyzer 5500A from Phoenix Microsystems and so, with the permission from Phoenix Microsystems, the company was named Phoenix Datacom. So began decades of innovation and success. 

In 1989, the world wide web was born, and Duncan Forrest our Director of IT & Compliance first joined the company. Duncan’s unwavering dedication and expertise have been integral to our journey, contributing to the strong foundation of Red Helix for the past 35 years. 

He says “Over the past 35 years, it has been incredible to witness the evolution of our company. The global technological development and innovation over these four decades have been extraordinary and unprecedented. It has been a true privilege to be part of a company that is continuously growing and advancing in this industry.” 

In 1991, Phoenix Datacom moved into its current office in Aylesbury, Phoenix House. This move marked the beginning of a new era, providing the space and resources needed to expand our operations and better serve our customers. 

By the mid-90’s, we had started selling Sunrise Telecoms (now VeEX) handheld testers, enhancing our product offerings and supporting the evolving needs of our clients. Our product line expanded further as we began selling the Network General Sniffer, a groundbreaking tool for network analysis and troubleshooting. Our products and services helped enable the security and monitoring of one of the first internet banking platforms, four years before Google even launched. Over the years we have been working diligently behind the scenes, securing the large networks that we have all come to rely on.  

Advancing Cybersecurity 

In 2005, a year after Facebook launched, Phoenix Datacom began offering cybersecurity solutions. By 2010, we had introduced our first 24/7 cybersecurity service. In 2013, we took a significant leap forward by establishing our Cyber Lab, a technology centre unique to a company of our size. This facility underscored our commitment to staying ahead in the evolving field of cybersecurity. By 2018, we had further solidified our position by forming our Security Operations Centre (SOC), ensuring comprehensive protection for our clients around the clock. 

A New Era as Red Helix 

After 38 years as Phoenix Datacom, we rebranded to Red Helix. This evolution reflects our dedication to being a strong, stable, and resilient source of protection and optimisation for organisations across the UK. We simultaneously introduced a range of cybersecurity as a service offering to better meet the needs of small and medium sized businesses and help fight the battle against cyber criminals. We gained financial backing from LDC bringing fresh perspectives and additional resource to the company, and Marion Stewart was appointed as CEO in January 2022 following the retirement of John Carson after his 23 years of service. 

Marion states As we progress, our dedication to innovation, security, and community engagement remains steadfast. We are enthusiastic about the opportunities that lie ahead and are committed to making a positive impact on our industry and the communities we serve. Our ambition is unwavering as we strive to create a world where cyber-crime no longer pays.” 

Community Engagement and Recognition 

Our commitment to innovation extends beyond technology. In 2023 we launched an afterschool program at a local school. Working with year 6 pupils, we designed a program that allows children to use maths and coding skills to create their own personalised infinity mirrors. This initiative gained national attention, and in 2023, our efforts were highlighted by Sky News, with Marion Stewart speaking live on air about our impactful work. 

Looking Ahead 

As we celebrate 40 years of excellence, we reflect on our journey from our founders living room to becoming a leader in cybersecurity and network optimisation. Our history is rich with milestones, innovation and dedicated individuals. We look forward to the future and continuing to make a positive impact on both our industry and our community. 

Thank you to everyone who has been a part of our journey. This milestone is a testament to the dedication and support of our employees, clients & partners throughout the years.