Three more of the UK’s leading house builders have signalled their support for vertically integrated materials sourcing with a switch away from multiple roofline supply partners to GAP’s Power of One model.
In September, Taylor Wimpey committed exclusively to GAP for three more years and the following month Persimmon moved its entire roofline supply contract to GAP in a ground-breaking new two-year solus agreement. In early November Redrow handed the GAP Nationals team joint responsibility for its PVC-U fascia, soffit and ancillaries supply.
As well as the three major players, GAP’s end-to-end manufacturing, logistics and 112-Depot distribution system is already the building materials source of choice for Lovell Homes, Miller Homes and Keepmoat.
Dave Tingle, Sales Director for GAP Nationals, said: “It’s all very exciting but let’s face it - we’ve seen this movie before. Ikea grows wood in its own Baltic forests, Shell and BP extract, refine and retail fuel that starts life in their own oilfields, and Zara can launch a new clothing range in three weeks instead of the nine-month norm because it makes everything itself.
“For house builders, the opportunity provided by vertical integration to engage quickly and effortlessly with every stage of the supply chain via a single point of contact is obviously important, but the big difference is the commercial transparency and financial clarity that come with it.
“Gone are the days when pricing needs to be distorted by complex, bewildering and time-consuming contract support and rebate schemes. And in a modern, competitive trading climate when relationships and mutual trust have never been so success-critical, it’s just not good enough to expect professional buying teams to negotiate with a manufacturer and then be told that their day-to-day operational dealings must be with a random mish-mash of sub-stockists.
“We felt it was time to demystify the whole process and give buyers what they say they most want. One negotiation. One brand. One fixed price. One point of contact. And one simple invoice.”
Following the cash acquisition of the SIG Building Plastics and SIG Windows businesses in August 2017, Blackburn-based GAP became the UK’s largest distributor of PVC-U roofline, cladding and trim products to the UK’s new home building sector.
Taylor Wimpey Divisional Head of Group Procurement & Supply Chain, Nick Dyke said: “Being a truly national multi-sited house building company with 24+ business units around the country and a central distribution hub in Newmarket, key for us was a non-nonsense approach to trading and the certainty that all our delivery points could be adequately catered for. Working in partnership with
“Simple net pricing with no complex and time-consuming retrospective rebates, a full scheduling service and trouble-free invoicing. Add to this the UK-wide reach of GAP’s network and it’s not difficult to see why they have quickly become one of our top tier providers and consistently rank highly in our performance monitoring programme.”
Adam Lindsay-Smith, Chief Buyer at Persimmon Homes added: “As one of the UK’s leading house builders, we set the bar high for all our supply partners.
“Our strategic review of several roofline options pointed to the need for reliability, consistency, transparency and a deep understanding of the day-to-day needs of our site-based teams.”
We chose GAP because they were able to demonstrate that their structure, clear communication lines and culture were most suited to our commercial and operational objectives.”
Darren O’Reilly, Supply Chain Director, Miller Homes said: “At the end of the day, what we need from all our suppliers is certainty. The GAP model is simple and efficient - and gives us control and influence over the entire supply chain, a single point of contact and an end to complex pricing mechanisms. Vertical integration is the only way that service levels can be assured.”
The 24 year-old GAP group’s National Deal – No Sub Stockists mantra is underpinned by its vast manufacturing centres in Blackburn and South Wales, by its 190-vehicle logistics fleet, and by its truly national network of Depots that provide coverage from Inverness to the Isle of Wight.
As well as bringing clarity and consistency to negotiations and transactions, much of the success of GAP’s dedicated Nationals teams has stemmed from its investment in processes designed to make life easier for local site teams and their management.
“Power of One is so much more than just a fancy slogan’” added Dave Tingle. “It’s become a way of life. It means as much to our estimators and schedulers as it does to our plot management and call-off teams. It’s also the focus of major investment. The £1.5m spent on technology to give buyers total visibility and traceability of all current and past orders, for example, is as important as new tools such as electronic proof of delivery that we’ve introduced to save customers’ site teams costly and frustrating administration challenges further down the line.”