Held recently at the Celtnic Manor Resort Hotel, the annual NBG Supplier Awards rounded-off another hugely well-attended and popular conference for the leading buying group.
Taking its theme this year as ‘Building our Brands’, the 2016 NBG business conference once again delivered a packed agenda to facilitate a significant degree of merchant and supplier engagement. From the more formal aspects of a sizeable exhibition, a new products showcase and the Partner AGM session to the networking opportunites afforded by the merchants v suppliers football match and even an Oktoberfest-themed welcome dinner, delegates were assured of a productive time spent away from ‘the coalface’.
The Gala Dinner saw approximately 450 guests in attendance to hear an update from NBG’s Non-Executive Chairman, David Szymanski. David emphasised the Group’s key objectives of “working together to build our brands”, emphasing the importance of facilitating “active partnerships between partners and suppliers”.
He revealed that NBG had enjoyed 9% turnover growth year-on-year and cited that the independent merchant sector was “performing well in times of change” and that the organisation’s members had opened 34 new branches this year when the nationals are consolidating.
Paying tribute to the notable milestone annoversaries being celebrated by members Beers Timber & Building Supplies (marking its centenary) and Higgins Building Supplies (a fantastic 150 years), David highlighted how the merchants in the room are “proud to be independent and striving for success in an ever-changing world”.
Brain Clover, CEO of the Rainy Day Trust, took to the podium to highlight the important work the charity is able to undertake for those in the sector who may have fallen on hard times. Fundraising to the tune of £13, 105 was raised over the duration of the event and Brian also talked about the success of this year’s Vado Rally, which raised £65,000 for the RDT.
Presenting a special award to the event’s organiser Aaron Frogley, Brian explained that next year’s rally will be supported by Pavestone. Once again organised by Aaron, the aim is for the rally to be even bigger in 2017 in terms of both participants and the amount of funds to be raised.
Completing the evening, the winners of the annual NBG Supplier Awards (winners in bold, along with the two runners-up):
Bricks & Blocks – Wienerberger (2nd place: H+H; 3rd place: Ibstock)
Civils & Landscaping – Clark Drain (Aggregate Industries; Tobermore)
Decorating & Hardware – TIMco (Crown Paints; Carlisle Brass)
General Build – Everbuild (Siniat; Cemex)
Plumbing, Heating & Showroom- Vado (Hunter Plastics; Masterflow)
Roofing & Insulation – Knauf (IKO; Quinntherm)
Timber – MDM (James Donaldson; Kronospan)
Tools & Workwear – Toolbank (Ox; Brian Hyde)
Account Manager of the Year – John Gaunt, Knauf (Simon Rance, TIMco; Darren White, Wienerberger)
Brand of the Year – Ox (Knauf Insulation; Reisser)
The main image shows Knauf’s John Gaunt receiving his Account Manager of the Year Award from comedian and awards host, Mark Watson. Also on stage are Nick Oates, NBG Managaing Director and John Dibble, MD of BPS and gala dinner compere.