Panorama Antennas is a family business now in its third generation and is a leading designer and manufacturer of antennas for radio communication.
Panorama’s constant cutting-edge research ensures that our antennas meet the demands of the very latest communication technologies. Trusted by thousands of professionals and consumers the world over, our antennas are depended upon to provide communications even in the most challenging conditions.
Currently, Panorama specialises in professional antenna solutions for modern communications technologies. We provide innovative antennas solutions to the critical communications, M2M and IOT, cellular LTE and In-building market sectors and we have particular expertise in providing combination antennas incorporating multiple technologies as well as fit-for-purpose solutions tailored for challenging applications.
With 70 years experience in delivering world-class antenna products, Panorama’s current product range reflects our unparalleled expertise in providing high-quality performance antennas.
Founded by Leon Jesman and partners as JFJ Ltd in 1947 the organisation began operating in a highly competitive consumer focused market.
J.F.J. Products was one of the many small, light engineering enterprises set up after the war by ex-servicemen.
The philosophy of J.F.J. Products was to identify a customer need and to supply it more quickly and with better products than anyone else. This approach involved a lot of trial and error in a volatile market place. Early products included mop heads stitched from rags, cake stands assembled from Perspex sheets, and eyes for 'sleeping' dolls that were machined out of plastic blocks. (Interest in dolls' eyes started by chance on the London Underground when Leon Jesman met a contact in the toy trade whom he had last seen in a labour camp in Siberia.)
Early experience in the development of plastic moulding technology was the key to the company's subsequent success story.
In 1949 Mr. Jesman designed and built his own 'plastic injection' moulding machine from surplus aeroplane parts that were widely available in the post-war period. He pioneered the process of 'insert injection' moulding to improve the quality and reduce the cost of the dolls' eyes.
Eventually, the business became established as a plastic moulding sub-contractor to the electronics industry. Work included moulding cable assemblies for electrical instruments and insulating handles of 'safety' hand tools.
Always on the lookout for new products for the home-made moulding equipment, the company discovered that coaxial terminal sockets for television sets were in short supply. Immediately, the company's engineers rose to the challenge and designed and produced new sockets and connectors. As the UK prepared to watch the Queen’s Coronation on television in 1953, demand for TV sets surged.
To supply the growing need for TV components, J.F.J Products purchased second hand moulding machinery and customised it for mass production. The new coaxial connectors for televisions were the first to be 'encapsulated in plastic' which made them superior and cheaper. As the company became a specialist in 'the technical application of plastics to the radio and electronic industries', it began trading as the Panorama Radio Company.
In the early 1960s, transistor radios became the latest consumer trend and Panorama redeveloped its aerials for TV into designs for 'state of the art' portable electronic equipment. When ITV was launched, the company designed a crossover unit to combine Band I (BBC, 47MHz) and Band III (ITV 200MHz) aerial signals. This led to a range of 'set top' and dual band telescopic aerials for BBC1 and ITV.
When Storno began supplying the first transistor radio systems to the Police Service, the Panorama Radio Company was commissioned to design new communication antennas for Metropolitan Police cars. Panorama responded with a revolutionary range of coaxially-fed whips and bases with moulded components that were the most robust, reliable and waterproof communications aerials available.
Panorama also designed helical aerials for Storno's new fully transportable 'compact' hand portables. Orders for these helical aerials followed from the Home Office for use by the Emergency Services and from the Ministry of Defence for use with the latest military radio equipment.
In the 1970s, when the UK Government issued licences to utility companies for 2-way radio communications, Panorama achieved massive market share in the rapidly growing market for communication aerials. The old partnership was reorganised in 1974 and the current company, Panorama Antennas Limited, was formed as a wholly family-owned business, as it remains to this day. The new organisation focused its activities to become the first specialised communications antenna manufacturer in the UK.
The widespread success of Panorama's 'Utility' and 'Professional' product ranges ensured that 'encapsulated plastic' construction was recognised as the industry standard method of antenna design. In 1984 Panorama was the first organisation to design and produce mobile antennas ready for the launch of the UK 900MHz cellular network on 1 January 1985.
Panorama was the first organisation to sell glass mount antennas in the UK and Europe. The technology was tried and tested in the US for 800MHz networks, and Panorama was the first manufacturer to adapt the design for GSM900MHz applications. World wide glass mount antenna design leapt ahead when, on 9th April 1990, Andrew and Christopher Jesman filed a patent application for the first ever solid state coupling circuit. Panorama's new glass mount was the first antenna to use a printed circuit board (PCB) in the coupling box. This patented design revolutionised glass mount antenna technology and set new standards for reliability and quality.
Today most manufacturers of cellular glass mount antennas have followed Panorama's lead in solid state coupling technology.
1989 The first ISO9001 antenna manufacturer in
1989 The first ISO9001 antenna manufacturer in Europe: Panorama's commitment to quality consistency led to the purchase of a network analyser that was the first of its kind in the UK. (Hewlett Packard kindly presented the company with a free bottle of champagne to celebrate the occasion!)
In January 1992 Panorama closed the original factory in Wadham Road, Putney, and moved to purpose built production and administrative premises in Wandsworth, South West London. (This move required a relocation of only 2 miles so there was no problem retaining the skilled and experienced workforce.) The new premises are much larger and are better suited for the provision of excellent workplace conditions. One of the main attractions for visitors is the anechoic chamber (which is another 'first of its kind' for antenna designers in Europe).
During the 1990s, Panorama Antennas entered new markets as the cellular telecommunications industry grew world-wide. Increased sales, notably in Europe, South Africa, the Middle East and Australasia, resulted in considerable investment in production capacity and product development facilities.
In 1997 new products included: the first low profile (no whip) 900MHz glass mount antenna; and the first dual band (900MHz and 1800MHz) glass mount antenna for the latest technology dual band cellular telephones.
In recent decade Panorama has turned it's focus to overseas and market expansion.
With new offices being opened in Germany, Australia and USA, Panorama has grown to be a worldwide name in the antenna world. Synonymous with high quality workmanship and knowledgeable staff Panorama has been market leaders of products for the emerging markets of M2M and consumer wireless.
In the early 1980’s, investments in new technology included the installation of a networked computer system for materials and resources planning. Since then, the computer system has been continually upgraded to integrate company functions and management systems, in 2011 Panorama implemented SAP cloud computing system. Today, we are focusing on improving our factory resources and strengthening our competitive advantages in areas of manufacturing and research and development thus ensuring our position in the antenna industry.