If you were not already aware Sika UK made a significant acquisition last year. As our General Manager, Ivo, mentioned in his earlier blog, we acquired Everbuild Building Products, Britain’s largest manufacturer of sealants, adhesives and building chemicals back in June 2013; and with the nature of my role within Sika I have been greatly affected by this acquisition in many ways.
I have worked for Sika for 7 years and have been Product Manager for 3 years for what was known as Sika’s Distribution Business Unit, the area of the business aimed at bringing the expertise and know-how gained from supporting large construction projects to the smaller Contractor, local Builders, Tradesmen and DIYers, by selling building and DIY products through Builders Merchants, Hardware Stores and Retail outlets. I look after the Merchant range and the marketing of that range. Since the acquisition a lot of work has been going on behind the scenes.
As of April, all of my Team has now joined forces with the Everbuild team to create Sika Everbuild, now quite a significant force within the Merchant industry. We are now the single largest unit within the Sika’s UK business, with a product range of over 500 products across brands, an on-the-road Sales Team of 43-strong, and a combined technical expertise that would be tough to rival.
For me, this merging of minds resulted in a huge relocation from the Home Counties to Leeds. I’ve joined the Marketing Team up here to continue as Product Manager for the Sika products, and together we hope to do some wonderful things! It’s been about 5 weeks now since I moved into my new Northern based home – no flat caps or whippets in sight. Well, that’s not strictly true; I have seen a few flat caps and maybe even the odd whippet, but funnily enough never together.
There are pros and cons, as with everything in life; I’m finding the roads in Leeds particularly difficult to navigate with so many motorways converging. If you miss your turn in Leeds, you can’t simply spin round or drive around the block. And when I first starting come up here I couldn’t believe the difference in temperature; 9°C up North feels like 2°C down South! On the other hand, Leeds is a vibrant city with lots going on. Not to mention it is surrounded by beautiful countryside, with the Dales and Lakes on the doorstep, while also being pretty close to the seaside too. York, Harrogate, and Manchester are all close by, along with many old market towns and picturesque villages. I don’t think I’ll be short of places to visit. Just like people always say, the people are immensely friendly up here, and the Everbuild folk in particular have been very welcoming. They are a dedicated team who work hard, but always have time for a friendly word. So far, I am glad to be a part of this exciting transition.
But what does all this mean for our customers though? Well, many good things. A combined product range means our customers have a lot more choice and diversity available to them. Everbuild customers have access to more specialised construction products, and Sika customers have access to more mainstream DIY and ancillary products; the two ranges complement each other perfectly.
Our sales reps all have a smaller area to manage meaning they are able to dedicate more time to each customer. With a combined warehouse, customers that previously bought from both Everbuild and Sika now only have to place one order and therefore face only one delivery charge. In fact, with the extended range, most of our customers are likely to place orders that take them over the minimum order quantity meaning no delivery costs at all. We now have combined Technical Support for our customers and end-users.
We have combined technical knowledge meaning even more innovation, research and development can be expected. We have an unequalled production capacity for the in-house manufacture of building products, meaning better products at better prices. Finally, the combined Marketing and Product Management Team will be able to communicate more effectively with our customers and bring their needs to realisation.
Don’t forget to take a look at our new new catalogues, currently one for each Brand. We are looking forward to bringing the two together in a single catalogue next year.
We can expect many exciting things to come out of this amalgamation that is Sika Everbuild. I hope you agree this has been a good move for both Sika and Everbuild. I’m hoping this will be a good move for me too!
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