Clearview National July 2018 - Issue 200 - Page 6

PROUD SPONSOR OF INDUSTRY NEWS INDUSTRYNEWS Fast-growing trade fabricator plans for further expansion » » WINDOW AND DOOR FASTENER specialist Rapierstar is helping leading Scottish trade fabricator Merlin Network (Scotland) to keep production on track and to a high standard as it experiences record demand for its PVCu windows. Rapierstar has now been supplying a range of high performance fasteners to Merlin for more than two years, with increased volumes in recent months reflecting the fabricator’s 22% increase in turnover. This, according to Merlin, has been driven by a combination of growth from existing customers, the acquisition of new customers and particularly strong growth in the new build market where its fully reversible windows are in high demand. In addition, Merlin is now the sole supplier in Scotland for Prefix Systems which has boosted its sales in the WARM roof and conservatory roof markets. Merlin Network (Scotland), which is part of the Saveheat Group, is planning for further market expansion with a £220,000 investment programme at its state-of-the-art design and manufacturing facility in Dalgety Bay, Fife. This has seen the installation of a new six- head welding machine and the creation of a purpose-built showroom which will support its growth plans for its mainly Scottish customer base. As a long-standing supply chain partner, Rapierstar is helping Merlin to maintain production efficiency by ensuring excellent supply reliability. Fasteners are supplied directly by Rapierstar from its 100,000 sq. ft. distribution centre in Cheshire, where it now stocks more than one billion screws, with almost 100% of orders delivered on time in full, error free. Colin Torley, sales and operations director at Merlin said: “The purchase of a new six-head welding machine is the company’s largest ever single investment. Having Rapierstar on board as a reliable supplier of high quality fasteners that we can depend on is extremely important. It helps us to manufacture efficiently and deliver finished windows and doors on time that exceed customer expectations.” Rapierstar is the UK market-leader in fasteners for the door and window sector, operating from its purpose-built head office and bonded distribution centre near Macclesfield in Cheshire. Paul McAuley, Technical Consultant at Rapierstar added: “We have invested more than £2.5m in stockholding and logistics to ensure the fastener supply chain is reliable with short lead times, and this is important in helping fast growing fabricators like Merlin to realise their increased production goals.” ‘Knowledge Hub’ gives key insights » » FREE ONLINE MANAGEMENT TOOL utilises industry data to give FENSA members exclusive insights for benchmarking performance and identifying new markets. With more than 9,000 members and nearly 13 million installations since 2002, FENSA is the UK’s largest and longest established Competent Person Scheme. It is also one of the UK glazing industry’s biggest data collectors and passes along key statistics to its members via the FENSA Knowledge Hub. The FENSA Knowledge Hub is a data insight and management tool that gives registered FENSA installers up to date information about the markets they operate in as well as snapshots of their own performance. It draws on 16 years of FENSA inspections and registrations data, making key metrics and insights easily discoverable via an online interface optimised for mobile devices. Rachel Culpan, Customer Service Manager for FENSA, explains, “From a business perspective, it’s a great way for installers to analyse the market and keep up to date with 6 » JUL 2018 » CL EARVI E W- U K . C O M trends in the industry. Especially with the Hub being free for FENSA members, we encourage them to take full advantage of this powerful tool.” The Hub puts powerful information into the hands of FENSA installers allowing them to evaluate their performance and prices against market averages, benchmark against previous data, and identify sales opportunities through demand trend insights. Key metrics can be viewed at different scales, from a national overview right down to the Local Authority level, allowing a range of insights that together give FENSA-registered businesses a better understanding of their position within the market. Chris Beedel, Director of Membership, FENSA, explained that the FENSA Knowledge Hub was created to help FENSA members benefit from the great wealth of data the company collects each year and the FENSA team is always looking for new ways to help installers harness this data to the advantage of their businesses. Installers can view their inspection history and compare their performance against themselves over previous years, as well as against the local activity rate over similar time periods. While individual companies can see their own installation data in detail, all information collected from other installers is anonymised and supplemented with local government statistics on population and housing stock to help present a wider view of the industry as a whole.