045 GGP 0815

GGP August 2015

45 I N T H E H O T SEAT On the warm edge GGP talks to John Cooper, who joined Swisspacer at the start of the year as market GGP: Before joining Swisspacer you were at Schuco for 24 years. Tell us about your role there. JC: I had many roles at Schuco, all sales related. They included national commercial manager of two different divisions, business development manager, regional manager and initially, area manager. I was fortunate to have a boss that realised I got bored easily and moved me around a lot! My most interesting challenge was to research the residential market in the United Kingdom and then formulate a strategy, write the business model and set up the division. GGP: You joined Swisspacer at the start of this year as market development manager for the UK and Ireland. What prompted your move? JC: Quite simply I needed a fresh challenge, outside of the systems industry. GGP: What is a typical working day for you? JC: There doesn’t seem to be one at the moment! I’m looking at all aspects of the business, in terms of strategy, marketing and product mix, together with promoting our company through the various channels within the market place. GGP: In October last year, Swisspacer launched its best value warm edge spacer bar, Advance, at Glasstec. What’s next for Swisspacer? JC: As you would expect with a Saint-Gobain group company, there are ongoing product developments, concentrating on quality and the requirements of our customers. We specialise in spacer bars, which means all of our energy is focused on our core products. I can’t say anything more, you’ll just have to wait and see! GGP: The UK tends to follow trends over in Europe. What do you see happening in the UK next? Will we follow Europe in its demand for triple glazing and better performance? JC: It’s almost inevitable that better performance will see the growth of triple glazing (and better performing double glazed units) in the UK. The benefits of triple over double glazing are evident in the ‘U’ values they achieve. Double glazed units with Swisspacer inside achieve 0.14w/m²k, compared to a triple glazed unit with Swisspacer inside which halves that at 0.7w/m²k. The speed of introduction is more difficult to predict because the emergence of triple glazing within Europe varies considerably from country to country. Statistically, in the Nordic countries, 80% of new installations are triple glazed, whereas in somewhere like Germany it’s 60%. Triple glazing currently accounts for 10-15% of the UK market by volume. Sales are driven by the market, so only time will tell. GGP: All warm edge spacer bar manufacturers currently position themselves as ‘the best’ – this can get quite confusing and it’s difficult to know who is right! Can you clear up the confusion? JC: The warm edge market has grown rapidly over the last few years, with all manufacturers enjoying extraordinary growth. Swisspacer clearly falls into the ‘premium’ end of the market, so if your focus is on a quality product with an unrivalled brand, you should use Swisspacer! development manager for the UK & Ireland. www.ggpmag.com August 2015 John Cooper


GGP August 2015
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