Planning ahead is discussion of the day for independent builders' merchants

Published:  24 June, 2014

The importance of planning ahead to ensure the successful completion of construction projects was the key theme discussed at this year's Independent Builders Merchant Forum hosted by UK brick maker Ibstock.

The successful event was attended by 80 independent merchants who gathered together at the Forest of Arden Hotel in Solihull, West Midlands to discuss key industry topics and learn about the latest in brick styles, trends and developments.

In the midst of improving fortunes and positive forecasts for the future of the construction industry, the importance of planning ahead and developing a closer understanding of product lead times to ensure successful completion of projects was discussed at length. In particular, there was a focus on the measures Ibstock has implemented to help merchants get the bricks they need, when they need them to help them meet the demands of their customers.

Tony France, director of builders' merchants Sales at Ibstock, said: "Our 17th IBMF was an interactive and engaging forum, which was full of debate on the future of the industry. It was a pleasure to see so many merchants attend, some who were attending for the first time and others who have been to many of our forums.

"At a time when the construction industry is on the up, it was interesting to gather the thoughts from merchants on the opportunities they're experiencing and how we can help work with them to fully maximise these. What came across clearly was the need for all parties involved in construction to plan projects effectively to ensure swift and efficient completion by keeping pace with increased demand for all construction products."

Merchants also found out more about Ibstock's full range of support services. These include its growing digital platforms such as its app and forthcoming new website, as well as the new innovative Merchant Module, which enables merchants to showcase the entire Ibstock range to their customers in-store via a digital library.

More traditional support included literature such as Ibstock's latest edition of the popular Brick Selector. An essential brick guide, Ibstock’s Brick Selector contains the entire Ibstock brick range over more than 100 pages. It is ideal for both quick reference to find a desired product as well as providing information for those looking for inspiration when selecting the right brick choice for a project. 

Ibstock also presented details of the bespoke range of services available to merchants, such as its Tradesman range, which is suitable for extensions, garden walls and refurbishments. It has 10 different products to match existing buildings and offers many benefits that the merchant market is increasingly attracted to. Peace of mind, courtesy of proven performance characteristics, is allied to a competitive price point that enhances margins for merchants.

For a full report on the Ibstock independent merchant forum event, see the July/August issue of Builders' Merchants News.

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