Research shows NBG benefits are more than just financial

Published:  11 April, 2016

Research carried out by National Buying Group (NBG) among its merchant partners has shown that that not only does membership make a considerable positive impact on turnover and profitability of a merchant business, it also adds further benefits including the sharing of best practice and personal growth opportunities.

Every merchant member that responded to the NBG survey of members that have joined in the last eight years reported an increase in both profits and turnover since joining – a remarkable statistic given the extremely tough trading conditions during that period when the building industry shrank as a whole. All the respondents reported at least three-figure percentage increases in rebates, with one merchant in the north of England and another in the south east reporting a rebate increase of over 2000% since joining NBG.

All merchants that responded agreed that being a member of NBG allowed them, as an independent, to compete effectively in the national market – both financially with improved prices, but also by having more clout with suppliers. One member said: “One benefit of membership is that we receive improved service from and relationship with suppliers, such as continuity of supply, training, range management advice on stocking profile etc. – this has had a huge impact on our business.”

In addition, members felt that NBG membership had given them opportunities as individuals to network, broaden their experience and to share best practice with their peers. And that this in turn has had a significant positive impact on their business. One respondent reported: “Being a member of NBG has given me personal growth. By this I mean it enabled me to broaden my thought process and open my mind to other areas of the builders’ merchant industry which in turn has had a very positive effect on my business.”

Sharing best practice is a key pillar of the NBG ethos and many respondents reported that this was a key benefit of NBG membership. “Attendance at NBG meetings and events refocuses me on the bigger picture issues. My staff dreads me attending these as every time I go back to the business I’m full of energy and have a list of ideas. Involvement in NBG keeps me fresh and motivated to do things better and to try new things,” said one merchant respondent.

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