The Dealer Report

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Ok, before we begin in full, let us just say that, in very much the same way that we don’t have any issues with the phrase ‘trade mag’, we also don’t find any negative connotations with the word ‘dealer’.

These influential, providers of service, product and connections are an invaluable and incredibly important part of the specification process – and by using that word, we’re not intending to belittle their market role in way, shape or form. And at least we know where we stand when we say dealer!

We’re going to give our finest dealers the floor. We’re going to find out what they’ve been up to over the past 12 months – the ins and outs, the big wins and the key moments.


Spacecraft

The big win

Spacecraft was delighted to be appointed to supply workstations, task chairs, storage and all loose furniture for Miller Insurance’s move to 70 Mark Lane in early 2015. ‘We worked closely with the client and their architect Scott Brownrigg, as well as Cordless, the AV consultants, to oversee the coordination and integration of AV into the furniture solutions. Furniture used included Knoll Scope workstations and Knoll Generation task chairs, as well as Brunner meeting tables and chairs. A particular favourite has been the Fritz Hanson Ro chairs we placed in reception and lounge areas.

‘Our project management team worked closely with the client and their contractor Overbury to ensure that all products were installed seamlessly and on time in a single phase. This was a significant job for Spacecraft and one which we’re proud to say ran smoothly, and with great results. In fact, since completion, we have also been asked to supply and install furniture for an additional space taken by Miller Insurance on the first floor of the same building.’


Amaryllis

What’s new with you?

2015 saw continued interest in our ‘new and refurbishment’ solutions. We have championed the concept of updating, upgrading and extending the lifecycle of existing assets whilst specifying new products to achieve design objectives. This approach not only makes sense in terms of sustainability but also potentially releases additional budget for investment in higher specification new solutions.

The big win

Our ‘proudest’ achievement was being shortlisted as a finalist (again) for the Premises and Facilities Management Awards in the Partners in Sustainability category. The award was in recognition for our work with Job Centre Plus. Amaryllis and Telereal Trillium proposed an innovative solution for the digital roll-out programme by combining the remodelling and reuse of redundant desks from vacated Department for Work and Pensions office buildings, and involving ‘social giving’ initiatives for the manufacture of additional requirements.

Moving forward

We remain committed to driving the ‘circular economy’ approach within the market. Companies do not necessarily need to ‘own’ their furniture and equipment assets – they do need a workplace that meets their operational and staff welfare needs – truly a ‘win win’.


insightful environmentsD3S_2129gg

What’s new with you?

As one of the UK’s largest workspace providers, insightful environments, formerly Steelcase Solutions, has unveiled a new brand in response to market needs. The new brand will be used as a platform to offer a broader portfolio of furniture, technology products and associated services, underpinned by world-class workplace knowledge and insights. We’ve also just opened a fully immersive new London ie studio which will showcase market-leading systems and ancillary furniture, technology, and an insights-led approach for clients and their specifiers and professional teams. The business will still be owned by Steelcase, benefiting from the stability and access to its leading insight and knowledge that this provides.

The big win

We have already worked with many leading organisations this year and completed installations for a number of prestigious HQ projects as well as many smaller schemes for up-and-coming companies.

Moving forward

We look forward to continuing the recent investments in our business to further the experience we deliver for our clients, developing our new brand and consolidating our position as one of the leading workplace providers in the UK.


Future Office

What’s new with you?

The biggest change in 2015 was the diversification of project work we were involved in. We incorporated our own fit out team, allowing us to undertake flooring, ceiling and building works for clients such as EDF Energy, where our commitment to Safe Working has given us a competitive edge in a difficult sector.

The big win

Amongst the smaller office refurbishments we manage on a day to day basis, we incorporated the completion of northern HQ for Bluefin Insurance in Harrogate along with a number of other regional offices for the client. Amongst our most unique was a finance package for over 250 Mesh Office Chairs at the HQ of Cross Country Trains in Birmingham, our first use of finance in this significant sector. A large win, again with Mesh chairs for AXA Insurance in Glasgow and Tunbridge Wells, meant we had another big year with Mesh.

Moving forward

Through 2016 we would like very much to continue this evolution and already have projects scheduled into April. Critical to this is the stability in the marketplace and we see the option of finance for furnishing and office refurbishment as very useful for clients.


MomentumDSC_2356

What’s new with you?

2015 has seen Momentum working more closely in collaborating with architects and designers to increase our sales in the UK and internationally. Large private houses in Israel and Australia, London and the Midlands, have featured alongside the new grandstand at Cheltenham Racecourse, local Welsh offices and Cornish hospitality projects and even Council offices in Warwickshire. The year has shown how the market is changing and how we have to respond.

The big win

One unique project in 2015 was to furnish the entire new Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Centre, a major new internationally-renowned medical research centre. Momentum was appointed to work on a collaborative project with IBI Group architects, BAM Construction Wales and the team from Cardiff University to provide all of the furniture for all Management and open plan offices, test areas, breakout spaces, study labs, reception and meeting areas and specialist facilities. The result is one of the best projects I have worked on in my 35 years in this business, a complete team effort.

Moving forward

Full service dealers who are close partners with their manufacturers, independent, fully-trained furniture specialists can really add value to projects and the procurement process. These dealers will understand good design, be knowledgeable about their product portfolio and promote their manufacturers to the design community.


EOS Interiors

What’s new with you?

We are delighted to welcome Leah Shutkever to the team in 2015. Leah joins us as our new Design Manager and brings a wealth of experience in architectural design and new ways of working. Whilst we are delighted to be part of a resurgence in the Birmingham commercial property market we have continued to develop our London client base and are really pleased to be working in and around London

The big win

New ways of working and new technology came together with a few traditional touches to deliver a new headquarters for Cala Homes PLC. We worked alongside the professional team appointed by Cala to design and build this 20,000 ft office in Solihull in just nine weeks. We took care of detailed architectural, mechanical and electrical design too.

Moving forward

We are delighted to be working with Herman Miller once again as their main Birmingham dealer and have already seen great success in specifying some great new products. 2016 will also see a significant expansion of our office and showroom space. Once completed we will offer the largest commercial furniture showroom in Birmingham.


Opus 4

What’s new with you?

This year we celebrate our 20th Anniversary. As part of the celebrations, we will be opening a brand new ‘Secret Garden’. This will be a new outdoor social space where staff can touch down and work in the sun, client and staff meetings can take place and where we can dine and have fun.

The big win

Our best project win in 2015 was by no means our biggest, but it was our best for so many different reasons. Firstly, we are proud to say Nando’s is now one of our key clients. As part of the design and research phase on a project, we tend to get very close to our clients – understanding the ethos to their business and the way they work. The Tree House project was also enjoyable because we managed to overcome doubts from the client that we could take such a derelict space and transform it something that was productive and beneficial to their business.

Moving forward

We think that now, more than ever, it’s the best time to be involved in commercial interiors. We are finding that clients are far more receptive to design-led changes to their workspace and understand the role that a creative, inviting office has in attracting and retaining a talented workforce.


Phusei

What’s new with you?

Actually we are pleased to say nothing changed! We have a great team with more years’ experience than we care to mention – we work to our strengths. We continued to win fabulous projects; we added another two great charities to our client list – following on from NSPCC we now support Amnesty International and Youthscape. We continue to grow business outside London – winning the prestigious new manufacturing facility for Rolls Royce Aero Engine Controls in Birmingham and another major project with the Co-op in Manchester.

The big win

Every win is big, no matter how small. Hachette UK brought eight of their publishing companies together under one new roof – the stunning Carmelite Building overlooking the River Thames. Each company needed to maintain its own distinct identity whilst the overall look and feel of the interior remained harmonious. Phusei worked collaboratively with HOK and the client carrying out workshops with each business to ensure the aesthetic look and feel of the furniture reflected the character of each company and the books they published. The end result is a beautiful interior, full of colour, design and hundreds of thousands of books!

Moving forward

Our hopes remain the same as every year; to continue working with our amazing clients who have supported us over the last 13 years; to, in turn, carry on supporting the design community specifying new and interesting products and to work with quality manufacturers delivering inspiring projects.


Day2BritishLand_JamieMcGregorSmith_Warm-12

What’s new with you?

2015 was another record breaking year for Day2, with the highlight (of course) being named Furniture Provider of the Year at Mixology! Our turnover has doubled in two years, easily passing our target of £10m annually, and the team continues to grow with a focus on attracting bright young talent to bring fresh ideas into the business.

The big win

Whilst our biggest news was the win at the end of the year for 2,500 workstations and loose furniture for Google’s new premises in Kings Cross in 2016, British Land’s refurbished headquarters was our major installation of 2015. We like a challenge and the fact that the office remained live throughout the fit-out certainly presented that! After considerable planning, our teams worked closely with the main contractor to refurbish three floors of office areas over seven five-day phases.

Moving forward

2016 is shaping up to be another big year for the business, with landmark projects on site for UBS, Google and Sky, amongst other new opportunities. Despite the doom and gloom emanating from Whitehall, we have never been busier and there are still plenty of projects in the pipeline, so we remain cautiously optimistic about the coming year.


Paragon Interiors (Connect Space)

What’s new with you?

Being an independent dealer enables us to fuse the very best ideas and products from an industry worth billions of pounds. What’s really exciting is the adoption by smaller regional companies. We have seen one of our local accountancy practices change desk allocation from 80% of their space to less than 50%. This is not a large international practice but a business that turned to us to offer an exciting, flexible, agile and branded environment that seeks to attract staff from their competitors. The power of dealer options has never been more impactful and has resulted in our business advising major corporations such as JLR, Capita and some of the UK’s leading universities.

The big win

2015 was a year bursting with great furniture projects. When global pharmaceutical research company Parexcel was seeking furniture for over 800 staff in their newly acquired 72,000 sq ft office, they ultimately turned to their design and build partner. Paragon Interiors where able to put the Connect Space response team in to action. We were able to offer options from UK and European manufacturers and this independent and impartial approach gave the customer genuine choice – they were not forced down a particular route. This independence also formed the basis of HMRC new workplace format now to be used as the format for workplace change effecting over 50,000 staff over the next seven years.
This month Connect Space and Paragon Interiors will install all the furniture in Loughborough University new facility in the former Olympic village.


K2 SpaceAdobe01

What’s new with you?

We continue to work internationally, supporting our clients as they grow in Europe. Our furniture installation teams will be in Mayfair one week and Madrid the next. 2015 was a record one for us and we helped our clients in cities including Amsterdam, Budapest, Copenhagen, Paris and Zurich.

The big win

A significant project for us in 2015 was the Adobe office in Dublin. As a furniture dealer with a design and build team, we delivered the fit-out and the furniture for this space. Another notable win was helping Blackstone spin-off – PJT Partners – open its first European office in Mayfair.

Moving forward

Our hope is that facilities and HR professionals continue to provide a range of workplace settings for their people and don’t neglect focus and investment on appropriate workstations. We will continue to leverage our strategic alliance with New York based Empire Office, the world’s largest furniture dealer, and help our mutual clients with a consistent global service.


Think furniture

What’s new with you?

Think Furniture are celebrating their 10th anniversary this year. We are a furniture only company and do not touch fit-out and we prefer to remain independent of any significant ‘tie-in’ with major manufacturers that would prejudice our judgement on what we propose to our clients.

The big win

With several large wins in 2015, the one we recall best was the set-up of a new head office in Sevenoaks for First Title Insurance. The remit was to create a light, modern and spacious feel whilst (of course) hitting the headcount required. Often these two aims are incongruous to one another but with some great design by our design and build partners we pulled
it off.

Moving forward

Looking forward to 2016 and beyond we would anticipate that the continuation of ‘softening’ the work environment will gain momentum with more woods/acoustic elements and of course the (ahem) rise of sit/ stand. Big questions such as China’s slowdown and a UK exit from the EU are too far away to accurately predict – and again, being a small ‘furniture dealer’, we are able to shift and adapt to these changes quickly should they occur and create an economic challenge.


Sketch Studios

The big win

Our biggest and best project in 2015 was with Herbert Smith Freehills. This was a big win for us in terms of value, style and the level of engagement that was required. We were asked to refurbish one of the floors in their London office over a period of 32 weekends. The space, which was in occupation with 300 members of staff throughout this time, had to be entirely remodelled in order to reflect an agile-work environment. The law firm asked us to fit height adjustable workstations for their users – quite a big and different thing in this particular sector. Mirroring our mantra, Herbert Smith actively care about wellbeing in the workplace and is one of the first legal practices to be pushing this. Frankly, we were damned excited to be working with the first legal practice on an agile-working brief.

Moving forward

We’re hoping we’ll soon be free of this ‘boom/bust’ cycle. The market is rapidly expanding but it’s also maturing as it does so. Businesses are beginning to realise that value isn’t just about price – quality also plays a massive part. As such, the smaller firms with lower margins are being ousted by the businesses that instead offer quality and professionalism. This is what we’re all about so we hope this continues because the British business landscape can no longer get away with forsaking quality. In terms of our hopes, we want to continue breaking into new markets, making people aware of who we are and what we offer and, ultimately, become more established and recognised within the A&D community. Ultimately, we want to be known for delivering the best possible projects. We want to be proud to take people to other people’s offices and say ‘we did that’.


Wagstaff15011A001

What’s new with you?

2015 was the best trading year in the company’s 112-year history – increasing our turnover from £31-52 million in 12 months was an incredible achievement.
Our performance was attributed to a mix of business from our group services, including fit-out, furniture, hire, move management and reuse/recycle, all of which have seen an increase. Our seven regional offices, including our head office in Clerkenwell, contributed to our success.

The big win

2015 saw Wagstaff awarded the largest single tender in our history. We were successfully awarded the systems furniture package for Aker Solutions new 335,000 sq ft HQ in Aberdeen. The building consists of office space and related facilities, including a fitness centre with squash courts, catering facilities, a nursery, medical facilities and an auditorium.

Moving forward

We hope to continue to be the country’s leading specialists within the interiors industry – striving to maintain the successful delivery of high quality office products and refurbishments across the country. We are looking closely into having a Wagstaff showroom in every major city in the UK, building on the success of our newly refurbished flagship showroom in Clerkenwell, which has been extended to showcase more world-class brands and to demonstrate our creative abilities to transform working environments.