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August 2018 Newsletter

August 2018 Newsletter

15 Aug 2018

Catch up on all the latest news on our products and services in the August newsletter!

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What a great summer!  I hope that you are enjoying the good weather and that business is as good for you as it is for us. Dessian has had a brilliant half year!  At 30 June we were 6% ahead of our revenue budget and whilst this is not all making its way to our bottom line we are thankful to have such a positive trading position halfway through the year.  We are also in the lucky position of picking up a number of great new customers who have decided to ‘make the jump’ to Dessian.  To be honest, we could have added more new customers but we have been conscious of the need to ensure that we don’t take on new business that causes us to compromise our product quality and customer service. 

The biggest clouds on the horizon have been created by our suppliers who continue to pressurise us for inflationary price increases.  In the December 2017 newsletter we flagged price increases in profile (5%), steel (6.5%) and gear (4%) and we eventually had to put our own prices up in March 2018 as we were no longer able to carry these increases.  Unfortunately we can see this cycle starting again!  We have had  notification of a 6.8% profile price increase and, in recent days, we have had early notification of an as yet unspecified steel price increase in Q3. We are doing our best to resist these, to the extent that we have reassessed the impact of changing a number of our key suppliers. However, our      research to date indicates that these inflationary pressures are industry wide and, in reality, suppliers are all increasing prices and the only question is ‘when’.  It is inevitable that we will eventually have to accept further price increases which at some stage we will reluctantly have to pass on to our customer base.  I only hope that we are coming to the end of this inflationary cycle and that things return to normal because otherwise there could be a major bump ahead.

Like many other large employers we are encountering difficulty in recruiting staff. This issue has got progressively worse over the past year such that there is now a serious shortage of suitably experienced staff across a range of roles. We have attempted to approach the recruitment problem in innovative ways including recruiting from Schools and Colleges and incentivising our staff to identify suitable candidates for appointment. Whilst these initiatives have worked to some extent, there is no ‘golden bullet’ and each appointment is ‘ground out’.

Over recent months we have continued to invest in our IT infrastructure, acquiring new servers, completing an upgrade to our fibre internet and enhancing our computer security arrangements and protocols. We are also shortly upgrading our IT system’s firewall and our telephone system to enhance our communication capability. These are all investments  designed to improve our efficiency and effectiveness and hopefully you will see the benefit of this.

The next big ‘drama’ will be BREXIT.  No matter what your view, there is no doubt that in the run in to 31 March 2019 there is likely to be a few potholes in the road which we are all going to have to deal with.  The big issue will be consumer confidence and the impact that this will have on demand.  At the end of the day I believe we will be able to cope with most practical problems that may arise – the one we won’t be able to resolve is the public deciding not to buy windows and doors!  Hopefully our politicians will eventually get to grips with this and show us a pathway forward.

I trust that this brings you up to date with the key matters affecting our business.  I hope to speak with many of you over the coming weeks.  If you haven’t had your holidays yet, please enjoy. If you have had your holiday, please sell as many windows and doors as you can because your orders will be gratefully received and appreciated!

NIGEL BOTHWELL

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Closing Date

15.08.18