Leaving a chaotic 2022 and looking forward to an equally uncertain 2023, Head of Sales at Eurocell, Steven Miller granted DGB time to answer 12 important questions which give us an idea about where the market might be headed for the rest of the year.
1. Did 2022 turn out as you expected?
We have had a period of very strong demand over the last few years, and, despite the economic challenges of 2022, it was a good year for Eurocell.
We saw solid sales growth in a turbulent market, and our new build, large contract and RMI project work continued to be robust.
2. What was the toughest aspect of 2022 for Eurocell?
Undoubtedly, a slowdown in smaller discretionary RMI work impacted our branch network and trade fabricators. However, the ‘Grow with Us’ philosophy in Eurocell enabled our teams to successfully support our fabricators with business and marketing support to help them weather the storm.
3. What was the biggest success for Eurocell in 2022?
In recent years, we have reacted quickly as new customer trends and changing demands emerge. A good example has been the popularity of outdoor living solutions. Eurocell’s garden room solutions have proven to be a successful addition to our unrivalled product range and 2022 saw significant sales growth for Kyube in particular.
4. With wholesale energy prices falling and shipping costs returning to pre-pandemic levels, what are the chances for price decreases in 2023?
Price and cost control are vital to us to enable our customers to continue to grow, it’s something we continue to focus on to ensure we offer the best value to all our customers.
5. With a focus on sustainability dropping down the list of priorities for consumers due to the cost-of-living crisis, how does the industry put this all-important subject back at the forefront?
The sector as a whole needs to consider the disassembly process from the outset of product design in terms of how each element can be recycled, reused, or repurposed. That is why we undertake a lifecycle assessment covering every element.
The aim should be true circularity. Eurocell has achieved this through our closed-loop recycling system, so we can demonstrate to the consumer they are making a sustainable choice without incurring additional costs.
6. The building plastics side of Eurocell has been very successful of late, what are the plans for the profile and extrusion side of the business in 2023?
The Profiles side of the business has continued to go from strength to strength in recent years, our plans for 2023 are centred around continuing our ‘Grow with Us’ strategy.
Our UK-wide network of fabricators is integral to our success and every action we take is geared toward driving their expansion and competitiveness. We build strategic partnerships that enable our partners to grow in our three main sectors – Trade/retail, new build and commercial.
While market conditions continue to prove challenging, there are opportunities for new business and sustained growth for fabricators who are ready and able to provide the right offer to customers. That will be our focus for 2023, to facilitate this strategic partnership approach and ensure we continue to grow our fabricators’ businesses.
7. What do you think are going to be the biggest challenges for fenestration this year?
With a potential slowdown in demand brought on by cost-of-living challenges, the sector will need to continue to concentrate on unearthing and securing business opportunities. This emphasises the importance of always delivering a cost-effective and quality-led service to customers.
8. Do you expect a market decline this year? And if so, by what margin?
In general, market expectations are forecasting a decline of between 7-9% during 2023. This makes it even more vital that we continue our work with fabricators and installers to ensure they’re best placed to maximise all business opportunities that come their way through our ‘Grow with us’ approach.
9. What are the best ways installers can generate new business this year?
Installers should examine the potential of a diversification strategy and look to expand service and product offerings to give them broader opportunities for growth.
10. What will be the focus for Eurocell in 2023?
We have already hit the ground running with some great new innovations and initiatives launching this year.
Our focus remains on our philosophy of ‘Our Team is Your Team,’ guiding our fabricator partners through the next 12 months to make 2023 a successful one for growing their businesses.
We will continue to invest in new product development and our fabricator partners, with launch events and fabricator forums to come throughout the year.
11. Is Eurocell due to bring out any new products this year?
Eurocell is continuing its commitment to investment in new product development and 2023 will be no different. We have 15 key projects in flight, ranging from single products like a new sash to facilitating the changes to Part F of the building regulations.
Following the success of our Luma flat rooflight product, we’re continuing to evolve this solution in response to feedback from our partners with increased size spans and new colours.
12. What is Eurocell’s position/opinion on the trickle vent debate that continues to rage after new regulations came into force in June 2022?
The new building regulations state that trickle vents are required by law in the majority of situations. The aim of these new regulations is to ensure every home receives adequate ventilation through trickle vents that must be positioned in the upper frame or sash of a window or door. Whilst there are alternative ways of complying with the regulations, trickle ventilators remain the simplest and most cost-effective way of allowing a controlled airflow into the building.
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