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GGP January 2015

Aluminium drives rapid sales growth for Sliders UK Investment brings four skylights an hour In a year that reportedly saw ‘extraordinary sales growth’, Bury St. Edmunds based skylight manufacturer, Sunsquare, says it is now capable of producing four skylights an hour, following a £250,000 investment into a five-axis machine centre. Sunsquare’s latest arrivals are three Elumatec machinery centres enabling a reportedly ‘swift and cost-effective’ production process. In addition, the ribbon has just been cut to its new glazing factory, which separates the two main production phases for each skylight. Whilst one factory is home to the latest machinery for creating frames and upstands, the other houses the preparation and installation of the glass. TRADE NEWS Justin Seldis, MD of Sunsquare, pictured above with colleague James Boughton, commented: “In 2015 we are taking our internal processes several steps further. A bespoke piece of software will allow an unprecedented chain of events to unfold, creating the world’s first seamless rooflights order-to-delivery system.” • TWR Bifolds, part of the TWR Group, says it ended 2014 ‘on a high’, with ‘a full order book’ for 2015. TWR Bifolds launched as a dedicated bi-fold business in 2014 and has reportedly experienced ‘phenomenal growth’ over the past 12 months, despite a recent report stating a fall in demand for bi-folds. Terry Richardson, MD of TWR Bi-folds, said: “Although demand has decreased in the domestic market according to reports, bifolds are still going strong and we are seeing rising demand here.” • Bootle Glass has expanded its office and factory headquarters to 10,000ft², ‘in support of the company’s ongoing commitment to growth’. The expanded unit triples the size of the current premises and is the result of five months renovation work on an industrial unit in Bankhall Street connected to the side of the existing headquarters. • Following a recent investment in ‘state-of-the-art’ machinery that allows for a ‘revolutionary’ manufacturing process, Sternfenster has reported a 48% increase in demand for its high-end Residence 9 window. Sternfenster says it is the only fabricator in the UK to offer the popular nine-chambered window in three manufacturing options. MD, Mike Parczuk, said: “Our Residence 9 with a seamless welded corner is unlike anything produced before – aside from the impeccable finish, the sash and outer frame are also stronger than those manufactured in the conventional way.” 16 www.ggp.com January 2015 Exports up Sliders UK says it has seen sales of its aluminium bi-fold door range more than triple in less than 12-months, reporting 225% growth year-on-year to the end of 2014. Sliders UK joint managing director, Ian Longbottom, suggested that the impressive expansion of its aluminium bi-fold business reflected a wider demand for aluminium products, attributable to growing demand among homeowners but also house builders for premium products. “To a point, growth in aluminium sales has been driven by the ‘Grand Designs’ factor,” explained Ian. “The architectural aesthetic that it delivers has created end user appeal and that’s been recognised by developers and is also driving growth in the new build sector.” “In addition to end user demand, our product quality and the service that underpins it, has probably contributed to the appeal of our bi-fold doors in the trade. “The housing market continues to perform well, something which we would expect to continue throughout 2014. That drives consumer confidence and the new build sector. Aluminium retains significant appeal in both and we expect continued growth in aluminium sales and those of our other systems throughout 2015.” In brief The expanding export division at Hurst Plastics is adding even more countries to its global map, having just dispatched an order for more than 50 door panels to a distributor in Thailand. The shipment of door panels is the latest in a string of exports to farflung locations for the company. “It’s been a tremendously exciting time with our export division breaking into new territory and developing sales opportunities in the north, south, east and west of the globe,” explained Tony Appleyard, Hurst Plastics’ export sales development manager (pictured). “Our international brand is gaining momentum with sales volumes very much on the up. September was the best month this year for the department, and with more orders pouring in, we’re showing no signs of slowing down.” Bootle Glass MD, Martin Clarke Picture credit: Christian Smith photography


GGP January 2015
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