In a week which saw the announcement of major investment in one of the industry brightest companies, it’s time to take a look back at what has been covered on DGB this week. There’s plenty to have a look at, so lets get right to it!
A Stunning Gallery Of Kolorseal’s Work
I started off a little late on Monday as I had started to come down with some quite severe wisdom tooth pain which has persisted all week, which meant I was unable to focus on any sort of work and really didn’t have the energy to get my writing hat on! Still, I managed to settle just long enough for me to put together a rather impressive gallery of Kolorseal’s previous work.
The gallery of images above shows a mix of residential and commercial work. Kolorseal are a business created solely with the purpose of spraying PVC and aluminium products any colour for the UK fenestration sector. Now entering their second decade in business, they have quickly established themselves as the industry experts in window and door colouring.
As the industry continues to grow and the popularity of colour expands quickly, Kolorseal are the company to go to if you’re looking to take coloured windows and doors in your business seriously.
I am happy to say that Kolorseal have agreed to stay on DGB for another 6 month stint! Since they have come on board our own installations business has begun to use them for our spraying jobs and I can confirm that the quality and finish of the end product is excellent. I’m hoping to get some shots of our most recent work to show you on DGB.
Is The Industry Doing Enough To Prevent Potential Solid Roof Problems?
The second post of the week saw me cover a subject that I think is going to grow into one of the industry’s most important issues in the coming months and years. The issue of solid roofs. The expansion of this market has been enormous, yet it also one of the most unregulated areas of our industry. I have my concerns about this, which I aired on Tuesday.
The industry has to start putting a controlled break on the growth of the sector before something terrible happens. Some will say I’m exaggerating, but it only takes one bad installation to go terribly wrong. The second someone gets hurt or worse because of a shoddy roof installation, the media will get hold of that and tear the sector a new one. You can imagine the headlines. An accident like that has the potential to ruin the sector incredibly quickly.
I am not a fan of regulation. I believe a lot of it exists for no good reason. But if there is an area where I think it it absolutely vital it is the solid roof market. There is so much ambiguity and grey areas when it comes to general information and what each local council thinks of the product that I fear one day someone is going to get seriously hurt of worse due to a rogue installer putting up one of these on poor frames. As soon as that happens you can kiss goodbye to the industry altogether!
Solidor Gets Major Investment
The issue of solid roofs wasn’t the big issue on Tuesday, as news broke of composite door manufacturers Solidor getting major financial backing to go on a spending spree in the industry and create a new industry super-group.
Solidor Group has received a significant investment from DW3 Product Group, which has just been set up with the financial backing of private equity firm NorthEdge Capital, to form a new and dynamic group of businesses that’s set to change our perception of the fenestration industry in the UK.
This strategic investment for a significant shareholding in composite door pioneer, Solidor Group, will allow the business to accelerate its growth plan, expand its senior management team and to continue investing in operations, capacity and IT. It will also provide a firm platform, support and commercial resources for a buy and build strategy to create a truly innovative group.
Over the last five years Solidor has matured into the fastest growing company in the composite door sector as it challenges for market leadership. With the industry’s best and award-winning marketing campaigns, they have continued to demonstrate an aggressive product development programme for their solid hardwood core doors that’s spurned a number of industry firsts, a colour range that extends to 17 finishes inside and out and a range of exclusive hardware options, not to mention a number of awards and accolades.
The news is massive for Solidor and their staff. They get some major financial backup, and with it, the ability to go out into the industry and handpick some of the best and most suited companies to acquire and enhance the new DW3 group. We all have our hunches as to who is about to be bought, but until Solidor goes and announces who they are, hunches they shall remain.
Balls2 Marketing Launch Video Service
Away from Solidor and acquisitions, Balls2 Marketing announced their new video service. Why did I decide to cover this? Well, as you may or may not know, I have been seen in a number of NFA videos recently, trying to make you all believe I actually know what I am talking about. But as well as being in the videos myself, I am a big believer in video content and it’s future in marketing in general.
Video 1 explains the importance of keeping in touch with your customers and how video is a great way to do that. Video 2 goes into greater detail about the service itself, showing you the set, the equipment, and an example of the types of video that are going to be produced. Two pretty slick videos which demonstrate the service and point of it concisely.
What also caught my eye was the openness of the pricing from Balls2. If you go on to their website they openly show you their varying price points for this new video service. Basically the prices range from £99 to £149 depending on the graphics and images used. It’s very reasonable for what it is, though the videos do range between 1-2 minutes long, so they’re not long affairs by any means.
It is good to see that other marketing companies away from just MyTradeTV are seeing the value in video content. Balls2 however are going about it in their own way. 1-2 minute clips at what are really quite cheap prices. If you watch both videos in the original post you’ll see that they’re not making a half baked attempt at this. They have the studio and proper equipment to make some decent video and graphical content. Lets see how this pans out in the coming months.
What The Major Cash Injection At Solidor Says About The State Of Our Industry
Bonfire night saw me explore what the Solidor announcement said about the industry a bit further. Whilst it’s great news for Solidor and who they are about to buy, it does have implications on the industry in general, and I wanted to explore that.
This all goes to show that confidence inside the industry is rather high. This sort of aggressive and rather public demonstration of financial fire power wouldn’t have been seen five years ago. It was all very conservative during the recession years, with more companies going to the wall than being bought. But half a decade later and a UK-wide economy growing stronger and faster than most others in the world, monetary confidence is riding high once again.
It’s also worth thinking about things from a Solidor perspective. For a business wanting to grow, one of the best ways is to diversify their product range. Now they could start venturing into new lines from scratch, but that takes a lot of time, money, research, expertise and trial and error. That all makes for a lot of work and little profit. So why not buy a business already doing well in that desired sector and amalgamate that into the existing group? A lot easier if you ask me.
I wanted to demonstrate that with such a massive financial package being put together, it’s a perfect demonstration as to the high level of confidence in our industry. Yes something like this is a risk, but it’s less of a risk now than it would have been five years ago. The industry and wider UK economy is in much better health and the environment is now right for businesses to go on a bit of a buying spree.
UK Housing Isn’t Ready For The Next Step In Fenestration
Last up for the working week was my look at the evolution of the UK fenestration industry and how we seem to be outpacing innovation in UK home building. Specifically, the depth of PVC profiles and how they have become fatter over time.
However, there is far deeper than that on the market still. The popular Residence 9 timber alternative window is a beefy 100mm deep. Way deeper than the industry has traditionally been used to. Now we don’t use the product at our place, but if we did, I know that the housing stock where we traditionally work really doesn’t lend itself to such a wide profile. It would require us to butcher a lot more plaster than most homeowners would be comfortable with, and when it comes to tiled areas like kitchens and bathrooms, it would be more complicated.
Deeper frames however are easier when it comes to new-build properties. Plasterers can simply plaster up to the windows and doors once they have been fitted, so no problems there. But retro-fitting the new range of deeper profiles isn’t always easy.
As PVC has been to the gym and got buff, homes are becoming less and less suited to the new range of products being developed. That isn’t the fault of the suppliers making them, it’s just the home builders haven’t really moved with the times in the last few years and continue to work with tried and tested methods of building. Well times are changing and before long they are going to have to start looking at adapting their building methods to make sure that 82mm or 100mm deep profiles can fit in with their buildings.