Rawlplug is set for an exciting 2015 as it launches its new venture Rawlplug International, a key part of the company’s plan to continue down the path of efficiency, innovation and growth.
These three tenets are evident across a range of work and projects carried out by the anchoring and fixing producers, which include a number of initiatives aimed at internal efficiency and sustainability, something which is valued extremely highly across all layers in the business.
In terms of growth, since being acquired by Polish company Koelner in 2005, the partnership has developed rapidly. Koelner renamed itself Rawlplug in 2013, and having generated incomes of €10 million in 2000, the holding company now earns in the region of €170 million a year.
Having launched in January of this year, Managing Director Mattias Andersson believes this exciting expansion will help maintain the upward trajectory of the group as a whole.
He said: “I want Rawlplug to grow by 30 percent in the next three to five years and I believe we will achieve this. With the Rawlplug International set up, we are ready for growth, and the UK team will develop and improve the excellent work we have achieved in previous years.”
The UK business is now headed up by David Harvey, who will bring his wealth of expertise into a new chapter in Anderson’s stead.
Rawlplug International, still headquartered in the UK, will be taking the company’s products and services around the world, with initial primary focus on the Commonwealth countries and the United States.
Rawlplug has been a world pioneer and leader since it began all the way back in 1919 with John Rawlings, and now supplies a range of anchoring and fixing products to construction, retail and industrial markets.
Its extensive product range includes bonded and mechanical anchors, lightweight fixings, insulation fixings for roofing and facades, self-drilling screws, passive fire protection, sealants & foams, gas & powder actuated tools, DIN standard fasteners, MTO fasteners for the car industry and power tool accessories.
Investing in Innovation
Research and development (R&D) will be a crucial driver of further company growth, and Rawlplug has recently invested in a number of innovative projects to help deliver efficiency and quality for customers.
“Going forward R&D is imperative,” Andersson added. “We have 35 people working on this across three different locations in Glasgow and Poland.
“Without R&D we don’t have a future and we know we have to come up with new and modified products; this is also about new packaging, new points of sales and new marketing. This is what we have done over the past four years and now we are perfectly placed to hit the global market.”
“We need to be even more efficient in the factories and communicate better internally and externally in order to compete with the likes of China on the manufacturing side. We are building up in order to double our capacity and become more reliable.”
Several new internal systems are driving efficiency across the company. A new warehouse management system is removing any errors relating to delivery of goods thanks to simple yet extremely effective barcode technology.
Rawlplug’s customer relations management system ensures that group makes the right decisions with clients, based on a true understanding of their needs and a drive to make them more profitable. Customers now also benefit from Rawlplug Essentials, a point of sale system which offers customers ‘minimal’, ‘optimal’ and ‘maximum’ product ranges suited to them.
Sitting above these systems is PIM (Product Information Master), which contains all product information. Any change made to the status of a product on PIM automatically updates the other systems beneath it such as the warehouse management system, allowing instant and accurate visibility of operations.
Further to this, Rawlplug is increasing its e-commerce activity to increase sales distribution channels to direct, wholesale and retail customers.
What growth that will be achieved in the coming years Andersson is determined to make sustainable, both in the economic and environmental sense.
Minimising Rawlplug’s environmental impact is certainly a priority moving forward. “This is another area of the business which has been built up and now has its own dedicated website,” Andersson said.
An example of the company’s dedication to this principle is the development of a brand new eco-friendly packaging for its products which contains special fibres, conforming to a sustainable brand image while not sacrificing quality or appearance.
The group also measures emissions from each factory and journeys made by staff in a bid to become carbon neutral.
Andersson concluded: “For us this will help the world to recognise that we are a responsible company, that we are taking social responsibility in local markets, and that we force ourselves to be even more efficient in our own supply chain. From our banking partners through to our customers we are concentrating on sustainability and they start to recognise our responsibility in getting emissions etc in the right directions.”
“The environment is a hot topic within the politics of the European Union and social responsibility of business is taken extremely seriously, and something which will help us to create a better future.”