Monday, 29 August 2016

Persimmon is the latest to dismiss the negative effect of Brexit as interest continues to be 'robust'

The latest in a ever-growing list of companies from the building and construction industry to announce good news post-Brexit is Persimmon.

They anticipate a “good autumn sales season”, based on the figures they reported that since July 1 its private sale reservation rate was running 17% ahead of the same period last year. That is quite some progress in just 12 months, especially with the widely predicted downturn expected.

Releasing its half year results to the city, the volume house builder acknowledged that the result of the EU referendum had created uncertainty, but its customers “quickly digested” the news, with customer interest being robust since the result. Persimmon said that the level of visitors per site per week was 20% ahead year-on-year.

During the six months to June 30 2016, market conditions were “positive”, Persimmon said. Its pre-tax profit increased by 29% to £352.3 million against the equivalent period in 2015. Revenue climbed 12% to £1.49 billion, with legal completions rising 6% to 7,238 new homes at an average selling price of £205,762 -  6% higher.

Over the six month period, the number of visitors to Persimmon’s sites was 8% ahead of 2015. Its weekly private sales rate per site rose 4% to 0.75.

Its current order book, including legal completions from July 1 2016, is 2% ahead of the same point as last year at £1.75 billion. It has 5,836 new homes sold forward into the private sale market.

Persimmon said that cancellations increased “modestly” in the week following the referendum result, returning to normal levels.

Jeff Fairburn, group ceo, said: “Persimmon's robust trading performance in the first half of 2016 was driven by our continued focus on meeting market demand to deliver controlled sustainable growth.

“While the result of the EU referendum has created increased economic uncertainty, customer interest since then has been robust with visitor numbers to our sites around 20% ahead year on year."

He added: “The group is now trading through the traditionally slower summer weeks but customer demand remains encouraging and we anticipate a good autumn sales season.”

Thursday, 25 August 2016

More evidence of the non-effect of Brexit as Polypipe delivers record half-year performance

Building Products manufacturer firm Polypipe has revealed that it had delivered a record first half performance and orders had not shown any signs of weakening after the vote in support of Brexit. The Doncaster-based Polypipe, which is one of Europe’s biggest manufacturers of plastic pipe systems, stressed that the market fundamentals were still strong.

Considering the wide-ranging products that Polypipe manufacturers and the many sectors that they operate in, this is very encouraging for the whole building and construction market.

In the six months ended June 30, Polypipe’s revenue rose by 31 per cent to £223.3m, while its profit before tax increased by 29 per cent to £29.9m.

The company said that, after an excellent start, demand from all segments of the core UK market has remained strong. It has seen continued progress in growth initiatives linked to carbon efficiency and water management.

A Polypipe statement said: “Order intake has remained consistent with the normal seasonal pattern and is yet to show any signs of weakening following the EU referendum. Despite uncertainty, the fundamentals of the market remain robust.” 

The statement added: “The business is extremely well balanced across its various sectors and does not have an over reliance on any particular part of the industry.” 

Polypipe said there had been encouraging comments from the UK Government recognising the need to provide stimulus for construction. The company also stated it was “alert to the economic situation” and able to adapt capital expenditure and capacity quickly.

The company secured a significant boost to its technical capability in the ventilation market through the £144.3m acquisition of Nuaire in August 2015. The deal to buy Nuaire has helped Polypipe tap into new legislation to reduce carbon emissions.

In a bid to reduce carbon emissions, the Government has introduced strict new rules on building regulations which are designed to reduce energy wastage. Ventilation can play a large part in harnessing the energy from warm air rather than pumping it back into the atmosphere. Polypipe said that its Nuaire acquisition was performing well.

Read our article on how Polypipe Ventilation's focus on internal support has helped them grow.

The company also revealed that the first delivery from its manufacturing plant in Dubai was made during July. David Hall, the company’s chief executive said: “We have delivered another record performance in the first half continuing the strong momentum from last year. Our strategic focus on the structural growth opportunities, together with the acquisition of our Nuaire ventilation business has accelerated our growth.

“Despite the uncertain economic backdrop, the long-term structural drivers of our business remain strong, our balanced business model means that we are not overly exposed to any particular sector and the nature of the group’s production processes enables us to adapt and flex quickly to changes in demand.

“The board is confident that the cash generative characteristics of the business and a commitment to remain agile will enable the group to continue to develop and outperform, whatever the market conditions.”

Analysts from Numis described the results as “impressive” and added: “Management state that demand from all the group’s core UK segments have remained strong and they are yet to see any signs of weakness following the EU referendum. “However, the group does point to post referendum uncertainty and therefore, despite strong interims, we leave our 2016 forecasts unchanged.”

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Job in Focus: KBB Specification Sales Manager in South East - £85k OTE

Our new latest Job in Focus is a fantastic position as a Specification Sales Manager for manufacturer of Bathroom Products. You would be responsible for growing the specification market in the South East for this expanding company. £85k OTE.

Our Construction & Building Industry Job in Focus feature takes a detailed look at some of the fantastic sales & marketing construction and building materials job vacancies currently on our books. 

Job in Focus is also promoted on our website.

Job Title: Specification Sales Manager
Job Ref: J7977
Product: Bathroom Products
Location: London & South East
Salary: £75k


Package: Basic Salary £55,000 - £75,000 Plus £10,000 Bonus, Company Car (Mercedes), Phone, Laptop, Pension, 25 days Holiday.

Company: Leading manufacture of a range of bathroom products such as Shower Enclosures, Furniture Brassware, Sanitaryware, Bathroom Screens etc. Our client targets a range of routes to market including Retailers, Merchant, Architects, Designers, Developers etc. This is a great opportunity to join an expanding sales team targeting the specification route to market.

Role: Specification Sales Manager - Our client is looking to employ a candidates who will be tasked with growing the specification side of the business in the South East of England. This person will pick up on some existing specification opportunities but will mainly be focused on seeking and developing new opportunities to grow our clients turn over in this area due to them mainly being reactive currently. This will meaning targeting Architects, Developers, Interiors Designers and other decision makers in the specification market with the objective of promoting our clients portfolio of products which includes Shower Enclosures, Furniture, Brassware, Sanitaryware, Bathroom Screens etc.

This is a really fantastic chance to due a forward thinking and expanding bathroom manufacturer with the chance of growing a relatively untapped marker with plenty of new business opportunities to target.

Location: London and the South East candidate ideally located in London, Middlesex, Essex, Kent, Surrey, West Sussex, East Sussex, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Oxfordshire and Hampshire.

Candidate: Our client is looking for top quality candidates with Kitchen, Bathroom, Ceramic Tile or related product experience who have contacts and a proven track record in this specification market. To be considered for this role you must be dealing with Architects, Interior Designer, Developers and other decision makers in the specification market on a daily and weekly basis. Our client is looking for a professional, driven and structured individuals with the relevant contacts necessary to hit the ground running.

For further information or to discuss your career options contact James Houston on 01480 405225 or apply online

Search for more building products sales jobs >>>

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Miele announce half-year turnover increase and expects continued growth despite Brexit

Good news for the KBB market as the appliance manufacturer Miele announced last week that they have seen a 6.4% increase in turnover for the 2015/16 financial year ending on 30th June 2016, reaching €3.71bn with a €224m rise.

According to the company, sales outside of Germany grew by 6.3% in the last financial year, with “notable gains” reported in the UK, Australia, USA and China. The German market pulled in €1.1bn in sales for Miele, representing an increase of 6.9%.

However, the company's forecast for the current financial year is “reserved but optimistic”, it said, reflecting the “political and economic flash points around the world where an easing of tension is not in sight”.

The group also noted the “dampening effect” that it expects the Brexit vote and aftermath is likely to have on the economy. “Nevertheless, Miele expects turnover, unit sales and market shares to continue to grow, without any further detailed quantification,” the company said.

Lets carrying on spreading the good news!

Monday, 22 August 2016

Screwfix leads the way as Kingfisher results grow and indicate that DIY Sales are strong despite BREXIT

More good news for the industry as B&Q owner Kingfisher has experienced solid sales growth in the Q2 of 2016 and said that it has seen 'no clear evidence' of falling demand following the Brexit vote. Like-for-like sales at the Europe's largest DIY specialist rose 3% to £3billion for the three months to the end of July, driven by strong growth at trade outlet Screwfix.

Sales at Screwfix increased 13.3% higher benefiting from extended ranges and new store openings. Meanwhile same-store sales at B&Q rose 5.6% in the Q2.

B&Q and Screwfix are viewed as useful indicators of consumer spending and the figures indicate that the home improvement sector has held up following Britain's decision to leave the EU.

Kingfisher's chief executive Veronique Laury, who is overseeing a turnaround plan at the retailer, said: 'We have delivered another solid sales performance in Q2 driven by the UK and Poland.

'In the UK, the EU referendum result has created uncertainty for the economic outlook, although there has been no clear evidence of an impact on demand so far on our businesses.'

Monday, 15 August 2016

Bellway Homes say visitor numbers remain 'strong overall' since Brexit

Yet more good news post Brexit in the domestic house building market as Bellway Homes announced their completions climbed 12.5% in the year ending July 31 2016, with the housebuilder seeing visitor numbers remain “strong overall” since the EU referendum result.

The house builder completed the sale of 8,721 homes during its financial year against the 7,752 achieved in the equivalent period of 2015, at an average selling price of £252,700, a climb of almost 13%. In response, housing revenue is expected to increase by around 27% to £2.2 billion.

Bellway said that in line with previous guidance, its pre-exceptional operating margin was expected to rise by around 150 basis points to approach 22%.

During the year to July 2016, the firm’s average reservations rose by more than 10% to 169 per week. Bellway reported a “substantial” forward order book consisting of 4,644 homes compared to 2015’s 4,568, with a value of £1,117.1 million (2015: £1,087.9 million) providing a “solid foundation for the next financial year”.

Since the referendum result, Bellway noted that a small number of visitors to its sites in London “at the higher value end” – where it has limited exposure - had shown “some modest caution”. “Overall, visitor numbers are still strong,” it added.

Ted Ayres, Bellway’s CEO, commented: “The group has delivered an outstanding trading performance, achieving new records for Bellway in respect of both volume and operating margin.  The group is well placed to continue its sizeable contribution to meeting the UK’s requirement for new homes in the year ahead. 

“It is still too early to assess the effect of the EU referendum result, however trading in recent weeks has been encouraging and Bellway, with its strong balance sheet and robust land bank, can be flexible and respond opportunistically to any changes in market conditions.”

Bellway is due to release its preliminary results on October 18.

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Marketing Job in Focus: Marketing Director of KBB Manufacturer - £90k

Our new Marketing Job in Focus is a fantastic position as a Marketing Director a manufacturer of KBB products. You would be responsible for leading the marketing direction and sales growth for EMEA countries, You would have four direct reports.

Our Construction & Building Industry Job in Focus feature takes a detailed look at some of the fantastic sales & marketing construction and building materials job vacancies currently on our books. 

Job in Focus is also promoted on our website.

Job Title: Marketing Director
Job Ref: J7926
Product: KBB
Location: National
Salary: £90k
Sector: Marketing


PACKAGE: On offer is a basic salary of up to £90,000 plus bonus, car, mobile phone and laptop. 

EMPLOYER: A true market leader in the KBB sector offering a superb portfolio of mid to premium level products on a global basis. 

JOB DESCRIPTION: Marketing Director: This is a senior level role with the successful candidate acting as a strategic leader to the company's marketing team. This person will contribute to the net sales and market share growth of the brand by helping to create and execute highly focused marketing plans across a number of important market channels including high end retail showrooms, consumers as well as ensuring they are the brand of choice for architects and designers for the kitchen and bathroom products market. The growth plan is fundamental across Europe, Middle East and Africa but most notably so in London and Duabi.

This person will have 4 direct reports from the marketing functions in the UK, Germany, Middle East and France with other key tasks including serving as advisor to the MD and being the recognised authority on the company's brand product selection and brand strategies. This person will be expected to create clear short, medium and long term brand strategies, plans and goals and have the confidence and gravitas to present their vision and take responsibility for delivery.

There will also be a need to proactively manage all marketing activities to strengthen the brand and ensure consistency across multiple offices and countries, lead and develop a first class marketing team across geographical borders and take leadership in the creation, approval and execution of the strategic planning and financial planning process and forecasting and budgeting and liaise with external agencies and analysis and interpret market trends and data. This person will need to demonstrate not only expertise in both product marketing through multi channels but also assume leadership for all aspects of the brand communications strategy across a variety of channels and media, both in the UK and across the EMEA wider region. 

LOCATION: Office based in the South West with frequent UK and international travel - candidates could live in North Somerset, Somerset, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Wiltshire, Oxfordshire, Warwickshire, South Wales, Herefordshire and Worcestershire 

CANDIDATE: The successful applicant will have a proven track record working as a Marketing Manager or Marketing Director. They need to have had meaningful experience in developing, launching and executing new products and new categories whilst being able to demonstrate experience of having developed and delivered successful brand strategies. Ideally come from the consumer durables market and with products that span mid to high end markets. Experience of managing P&L and budgets is essential. KBB experience would be an advantage but is not essential as it is more important that they have worked with premium products. Previous international marketing and people management would be desirable. Must have strong leadership skills, analytical and commercial focus. Essential, is the ability to quickly build rapport and respect across a team and have credibility for their actions. This post could prove to be a stepping stone to a general management role for the right person. 

For further information or to discuss your career options contact Natalie Matthews on 01480 405225 or apply online.

Search for more building products sales jobs >>>

Monday, 8 August 2016

The UK Shower market brings refreshing news!

Following on in a similar vein to all the positive news we reported last week post Brexit, more refreshing news can be found in a new report on the UK shower market from MTW Research.

The report indicates an above inflation growth in 2016, with new technology paving the way for a £50 million sales 'bounce' by 2020, they say the market is still healthy despite Brexit and that many fresh opportunities have presented themselves as a result.

Based on industry sales data, the report forecasts volume and values and suggests that sales of shower products are set for 10% growth by 2020, highlighting healthy fundamentals as consumer spending remains strong in 2016.

MTW say that growth in digital shower sales of 26% and a steady shift to higher specification preferences are boosting value performance, whilst volume growth is underpinned by rising domestic refurbishment activity for shower controls, screens, trays and enclosures.

Discussing current trends, MTW executive James Taylor commented: "The showers market in 2016 is being driven by demand for not just high quality, design led enclosures and trays but also the latest technologies in smart showering which offer an inclusive product that the whole family can use for great levels of control and ease of use."

Latest KBB jobs >>

The 280-page report reviews the impact of Brexit, forecasting that whilst demand from housebuilding may dip in the near term, value growth is set to remain healthy as consumers demand higher value products with enhanced features. MTW also identifies a number of opportunities presented by Brexit, highlighting a likely growth in UK manufacturing as investment in production facilities increases in the longer term, underpinned by low corporate taxes, a lower cost of Sterling and flexible labour force.

MTW also identifies a number of key threats to the shower products market, with pricing pressure a key characteristic of the sector in 2016. The showers market continues to polarise into the higher value, brand-led sector underpinning value growth whilst lower value imports are rising in volume terms.

The report provides channel shares since 2010 with Internet distribution gaining share in 2016, though online retailers are growing share primarily in the low-mid value end of the market, with less success at the higher value end of the market. According to MTW, this represents a key opportunity for specialist bathroom retailers who are able to occupy a differentiated market position by offering higher value products and services.

MTW also reviews the commercial showers market, suggesting that whilst there may be some 'Brexit bumps' in the road over the next 2 - 3 years, the overall trading environment is reasonably positive with above inflation growth forecast to 2020. The report suggests that should Brexit result in a slowing of consumer confidence, growth in 'Staycations' may prompt the domestic tourism and leisure markets, as was the case during the last recession, underpinning some additional stimulus for the commercial showers sector.

The tone of MTW's report is generally optimistic, with growth led by smart technological advances offering greater levels of control in the bathroom.

By 2020, MTW forecasts growth of £50 million for the UK shower products market, underlining healthy longer term conditions though somewhat erratic sales in the near term.

The report identifies opportunities for sectors such as concealed mixing valves, low profile shower trays and semi-frameless enclosures.

MTW asserts that the 'inclusive' showers market also offers growth potential with around 14 million consumers aged 60 representing around 30% of all shower purchases in 2016.

Buy the report here...

Friday, 5 August 2016

Latest Construction Output Figures show fall

Construction output in July fell at its fastest rate since June 2009, according to the seasonally adjusted Markit/CIPS UK Construction Purchasing Managers' Index® (PMI®).

The July data was 45.9 in July, down fractionally from 46.0 in June and below the 50.0 no-change threshold for the second month running. 

Anecdotal evidence suggested that economic uncertainty following the EU referendum was the main factor weighing on business activity in July, especially in the commercial building sector.

The latest reading reflected the steepest fall in commercial building for over six-and-a-half years, alongside a drop in civil engineering activity for the first time in 2016. Residential construction also declined at a solid pace in July, but the rate of contraction eased from June's three-and-a-half year low. 

Some overall demand had been relatively resilient in July, especially for house building and infrastructure projects and there were also reports suggesting that demand patterns had been more resilient than expected, with some firms linking new enquiries from international clients to exchange rate depreciation. 

Tim Moore, Senior Economist at Markit and author of the Markit/CIPS Construction PMI® , said: "July's survey is the first construction PMI compiled entirely after the EU referendum result and the figures confirm a clear loss of momentum since the second quarter of 2016, led by a steep and accelerated decline in commercial building. Reduced volumes of new work to replace completed projects contributed to a fall in employment for the first time in just over three years. 

"Latest data showed that confidence regarding the year-ahead outlook eased further following the EU referendum, but only to a level last seen in April 2013 and one that is still well above the record lows experienced in 2008/09." 

David Noble, Group Chief Executive Officer at the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply, said: "Though a marginal drop in the index compared to last month, the sector's downhill course is a seriously disappointing development, with purchasing activity falling for the second consecutive month, and following another drop in new orders. 

"The index also recorded the lowest business confidence since April 2013, and the fastest overall fall in output since June 2009. Commercial building bore the main brunt of this downturn with the largest decrease in activity for six-and-a-half years. "Material costs were driven upwards at the fastest pace since March 2015, with the weaker pound largely to blame, and some firms reported lower stock levels to maintain cash flow. Job falls were in evidence, but more as a result of a close watch on margins and natural shedding than a shrinking of operations. 

"With a reduction in new work for the third month in succession and one of the fastest falls since early 2013, this hesitancy to commit was largely attributed to the continued hazy gloom of uncertainty as clients became more cautious, and deferred orders. The picture is still unclear around whether this direction is fixed for the coming months or is a short-term reaction and the aftershock of the UK's referendum decision." 

Thursday, 4 August 2016

NHBC reveal that new home quarterly registrations are strongest since 2007

Some very encouraging news from the house building sector was published by the NHBC last week as they revealed that new home registrations in Q2 2016 totalled 41,222, marking the strongest quarter since 2007.

The figures were a 1% lift on Q2 2015. Private sector registrations across the UK climbed 6% to 31,753 new homes, whilst the public and affordable housing sector saw a 13% drop to 9,469. The pre-EU referendum uncertainty had not impacted Q2 statistics, commented NHBC’s ceo Mike Quinton.

At the same time, the Q2 figures conveyed a “mixed picture” across the country, NHBC said. Half of the 12 UK regions showed increases in registrations, including the South East with a rise of 37% and the North East at 34% growth against the same period last year. The other half experienced falls in numbers, for example Wales at -30% and London -29%.

But new home completions for the rolling 12 months of July 2015 to June 2016 showed growth in almost all regions, at a 6% overall increase compared to the previous 12 months. This reflected the robust registration growth seen in recent years, NHBC said.

Mike Quinton commented: “Our latest statistics show that the industry continues to consolidate on the strong growth in registrations seen over recent years. 

“These registrations reflect continued industry confidence in the run-up to the EU referendum at the end of June. Indeed, this period was the strongest quarter since Q4 2007, albeit still some way off levels seen over a decade ago.”

Commenting on housing activity since the referendum result, HBF’s director of economic affairs John Stewart said that in the past three weeks, there had been a “bounceback”, with reservations “level pegging with a year ago”.

“The evidence on the ground is that housebuilders are carrying on in market terms. They’ll be looking at what happens next month and in September.”

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Job in Focus: National Sales Manager for Luxury Bathroom Products - £85k

Our latest Job in Focus for August is a great opportunity for a manufacturer of luxury bathroom products. You would be the National Sales Manager, managing and leading a team of Area Managers, covering the retail, specification and contract sectors. 

Our Construction & Building Industry Job in Focus feature takes a detailed look at some of the fantastic sales & marketing construction and building materials job vacancies currently on our books. Job in Focus is also promoted on our website.

Job Title: National Sales Manager
Job Ref: J7636
Product: Bathroom Products
Location: National
Salary: £85k

National Sales Manager opportunity, working for a market leading manufacturer of luxury bathroom products. 

PACKAGE: Basic salary £65k to £85k plus Bonus Scheme, Car, Healthcare, Pension & other company benefits plus the opportunity to join a fantastic brand. 

EMPLOYER: Our client are a market leading manufacturer of luxury bathroom products boasting an excellent reputation. They are now looking to grow significantly and offer a superb opportunity for someone to develop their career in a true market leader. 

JOB DESCRIPTION: Superb opportunity to prove your management skills managing a team of Area Sales Managers covering all channel sectors including Retail, Specification & Contract. This person will inherit a strong team who are very experienced in their own dedicated channel - this person will need to be capable of understanding the differences between selling via Retail, Specification & Developer sectors and be comfortable being the visible face and voice to key customers in all of these sectors. They will be expected to set & monitor targets providing strong growth and motivate the team to achieve and surpass these targets. 

LOCATION: National role so someone living centrally would be advantageous including, West Midlands, Birmingham, Manchester, Yorkshire, Staffordshire, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire, Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Oxfordshire, Hertfordshire, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire etc 

CANDIDATE: We are looking for a high calibre manager with a clear background in the Bathroom industry - preferably with strong experience in the Retail channel 

For further information or to discuss your career options contact Colin Hoy on 01480 405225 or apply online

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Monday, 1 August 2016

FREE Construction Sales Career Development Clinics for August 2016

Before you know it, the summer will be over, so if you have some spare time over the holidays, why not think about looking for a new job?

If you want to progress your career in construction sales or marketing, perhaps you should take advantage of a FREE evaluation of your career, gain expert guidance on your next move and a look at suitable current vacancies. 

Interested...? Arrange to attend our PinBuild Career Development Clinics this August. 

This could be the most important appointment of your career so far...

PinBuild Clinics are for sales and marketing professionals in the construction and building products sector, providing specialist career advice and a match to the latest construction sales vacancies.

Call us and arrange to meet one of our expert construction industry consultants on 01480 405225 or contact us via to secure your booking e-mail

August clinic dates
  • Thursday 11th August - Birmingham
  • Wednesday 17th August - Dartford
  • Thursday 18th August - Leeds            
  • Tuesday 23rd August - Reading
  • Wednesday 24th August - Manchester
  • Wednesday 31st August - Oxfordshire
Our current jobs: You might find one you'd like to discuss: Search for building and construction products sales jobs

PinBuild Clinics will evaluate the job seeker’s career to date and identify the best opportunities available. The clinics provide professionals with expert advice on how to progress their career by discussing the industry sectors that have potential for growth, the skills and focus needed to ensure that they develop with the changing nature of the market and how to ensure that their career continues to progress rather than stagnating.

The clinics will also assist those that attend to map out a realistic and achievable career path, including any potential training requirements. Assistance will also be given to evaluate their CV and also their interview technique and where they should focus to ensure they realise their true potential in the building and construction industry.

We specialise in external and internal sales positions, marketing and management roles and director and board appointments with manufacturers, merchants or distributors across the whole building, construction and interiors product spectrum.

Take some time out to read about CRASH the construction industry's charity for homeless people and one of our industry partners for our charity initiative 'Helping others as you recruit.' Our other partner is the wonderful Lighthouse Club, who look after people and families from the industry who have suffered from illness, injury or death.