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Glee Show gives merchants sales inspiration

This year's Glee exhibition – the trade show for the garden and leisure industries – got off to a good start. The event, held at the NEC from Monday to Wednesday drew "quality visitors" that kept the 450-plus exhibitors motivated to do their best to inspire and advise about the trends that will mean big spends in the forthcoming months.

Glee is billed as the event where merchants can meet with new and existing suppliers, discover new products and buy for the season ahead.

This year, a 'Planteria' area was sited within the Glee Nursery. Nick Davison, the show's director, said the five display benches allowed exhibitors to show different varieties of plants and helped visitors get up close and personal with display ideas and innovations for their own landscaping areas.

The show's expanded seminar programme offered visitors an opportunity to hear how to market and present their merchandise to create add-on sales. Also at the show was the Glee Innovator Zone and co-located Petindex pet industry exhibition.

Big news for 2012:

Cabins are huge, according to Forest. The market has taken off, particularly with the trend for working at home. Using cabins as the office away from the office means the market has experienced year-on-year growth, said Paul Hayes.

Pressure-treated timber takes the hassle out of using wood products in the garden, said Tracey Woodhouse of M&M, because there is no need to treat it.

The company's latest micronised treatment is more environmentally-friendly too, because the copper particles are so finely milled that they can be driven more deeply into the timber at the pressure-treatment stage so that it will not leach.

Natural stone is another area to watch. Natural Paving's Gino Bracco believes merchants can gain more from this market by working with companies that can offer variety and quality.The company's tumbled stone, polished stone and weathered stone provide quality, sizes and colours to capture the consumer's imagination – and their cash.

Border Stone, a division of Aggregate Industries, presented its concrete paving within an enormous stand. Richard Slack said the company's marvellous boot-shaped slabs, rope coil-effect slabs, penny farthing circles and even the (concrete) Woodland patio furniture set that looked like weathered timber would become available for the merchant sector "if there was demand for it".

For garden roofing or 'eco builds', Onduline was Europe's best kept secret until its explosive launch at this year's Ecobuild show.

The Onduline Group sells in virtually every country worldwide with 12 manufacturing plants and 35 subsidiary companies supplying roofing products to over 90 countries.

Its bituminous corrugated roofing systems feature Onduvilla – a tile strip, designed to form a durable roof covering in a three-tone colour finish of green, red, brown or slate to create the appearance of clay tiles; the Mini Profile sheet, which has the same qualities as the Onduline classic, but with a low-line corrugation of 24mm and the Onduline sheet in a tough, yet lightweight material, manufactured from recycled fibres.

Source : Builders’ Merchants News

22 September 2011
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