Updates on VBH products, people and services

On this page we aim to keep you informed of what's happening at VBH. This could be product news, stories about the members of our superb team, or just interesting news about VBH. It's a mix of stories from the trade magazines and just snippets from the day to day life of your hardware partner

Aidan Lynch, a member of our greenteQ design team, is heading to South Africa next August to take part in some charity work, building houses and helping in other ways, along with Kent Scouts. Read on as Aidan explains what they will be doing and how you can help this very worthwhile cause:

"I have been invited to help lead a group of 16-25 year old Scouts from across Kent on a journey of a lifetime. We will be spending 17 days in Sodwana Bay, South Africa in August 2019.  During our trip we will be partaking in numerous projects from integrating within the community, building homes for families in need, helping with after school clubs and simply playing games with the local children.

"Coco’s Foundation is a Registered UK Charity, which inspires UK Teens to support and help orphaned children within the poorest areas of South Africa.

"To do this everyone on the journey will need to pay or fundraise/Crowdfund at least £2,500 towards the trip.  I hope to contribute as much as I can myself but any help others can provide to make this possible would be greatly received. Of this amount a deposit of £1,000 needs to be put down by December 2018 (6 months before) and the remaining amount paid by April 2019.

"We are aiming to arrange group fundraising events once we have selected the Scouts who will be taking part but we will also be doing our own fundraising alongside. So if you have any great ideas please do pass them on.

"I also have a Just Giving page (see below) for any donations.  Any donations raised in excess of my and the Group target will go directly to Coco’s Foundation to help with any further projects they wish to build in the community."

https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/aidanlynchkssouthafrica2019

Please also check out Coco’s Foundation website

http://www.cocosfoundation.co.uk/

Leading hardware supplier VBH (GB) has been shortlisted for ‘Component Supplier of the Year’ at the prestigious G18 Awards.

The awards attract a large number of entries of a very high standard and the competition is keen, so Managing Director Simon Monks is delighted to be nominated, saying: “It’s only the second time we have entered for this award, so it’s great to make the shortlist. VBH’s focus is to provide the best product range, backed by outstanding customer service. We constantly look to improve our offering to customers. The greenteQ range and our unique Q-secure guarantee are examples of innovations that benefit fabricators, installers and their customers, the homeowner.”

Launched in 2009, greenteQ is an attractive and innovative suite of window and door furniture, positioned as a premium choice for fabricators and installers. VBH’s Q-secure guarantee means installers selling to homeowners can reassure them that the locks and handles on their new doors and windows will be secure, and if there is a break-in due to hardware failure, the homeowner gets up to £3,250. Crucially, Q-secure doesn’t only guarantee greenteQ products; tested hardware from VBH’s selected brand partners are also covered. This multi-brand element sets Q-secure apart from other hardware guarantees, say VBH.

“Reaching the shortlist represents a great achievement for our team,” continues Simon, “but we’d love to follow that up with a win!”  

The G18 Awards will be held at the London Hilton, Park Lane on 30th November.

For more information visit www.vbhgb.com or call 01634 263 263.

This article first appeared in the trade press during October 2018 following the announcement that we had made the short list of finalists

Established window, door and conservatory fabricator Modplan is a one-stop shop for its customers. Continuing investment in its product range, manufacturing, processes and people keeps the company ahead of the curve in trade fabrication. Leading hardware distributor and manufacturer VBH works closely with Modplan to help deliver the best products. Both companies are currently working towards a ‘single sourcing’ arrangement; around 65% of the hardware Modplan uses is from VBH’s own greenteQ range, with plans to increase this further.

greenteQ complements Modplan’s quality range. Sales and Marketing Director Justin Williams comments: “The standard 10-year guarantee on greenteQ products, suited colour options, good functionality and competitive prices are all factors our customers rely on. The quality of the products is excellent and ensures we continue to deliver high performance windows and doors. VBH’s Coastline range comes with a 25-year guarantee on the finish, so we supply it as standard on export orders – and it’s proving popular in the UK too.”

Regular, reliable deliveries from VBH mean Modplan can hold less warehouse space and have regular stock replenishment. Modplan uses greenteQ door cylinders, door, window and patio furniture, flag hinges, and locking espagnolettes. The most popular colours are white, closely followed by the increasingly popular polished chrome, then black, gold, satin chrome and smokey chrome.

Justin adds: “As a business, we pride ourselves on our partnership approach with our customers and suppliers. We have weekly reviews with VBH so any issues are quickly resolved. It is important that everyone works together and our relationship remains strong and reliable. VBH’s products, service and support are excellent in all respects.”

For more information on VBH call 01634 263 263, visit www.vbhgb.com and follow @vbhgreenteQ. For more on Modplan visit www.modplan.co.uk.

This article first appeared in the trade press during November 2018

VBH has launched Aspire, a new suite of handles and finger pulls suitable for aluminium, timber and PVC-U lift and slide doors. Part of VBH’s greenteQ range, Aspire is available in a wide choice of finishes, including polished or brushed stainless steel, PVD gold, satin chrome, window grey, black, anthracite grey and white.

The Aspire handle is ideal for operating heavy doors, ensuring they can be opened and locked with minimal effort as the door is lifted from its resting position into slide mode. Its 250mm lever provides plenty of leverage to drive the mechanism - lift/slide sashes can be up to 3335mm wide and weigh up to 400Kg depending on the gear used. A strong spring gives positive location in the ‘closed’ and ‘slide’ positions to further aid smooth operation.

Gary Gleeson, Marketing Manager at VBH says the decision to introduce Aspire is down to the resurgence of lift and slide doors: “The technology available now results in a smooth sliding action and the ability to produce very large and heavy sashes for this type of installation.

“Wall to wall, floor to ceiling lift and slide doors are super trendy – the stuff of Grand Designs. Clean lines and big glazed spans deliver a major wow factor to any room. Their popularity is growing, they are reliable, and are easy to operate with stylish greenteQ Aspire handles on even the heaviest door.”

To find out more, speak to your Area Sales Manager or call 01634 263 263.

This text first appeared in the industry trade press during September and October 2018

Simon Monks, VBH (GB) Managing Director, looks at how the window and door industry can embrace new technology to improve customer service.

The future of customer service is changing. Expectations have risen across the board: customers want fast delivery (and the definition of fast has dramatically changed over recent years), accuracy (what we ordered, when we want it) and extended hours so they can order at their leisure. A swift response to any queries, issues or complaints is also vital. New technology has changed the landscape for service and support. This looks set to continue with voice-recognition systems such as Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant. But we can’t (yet) do everything via technology – the most successful systems are those that also offer a human touch.

For example, in the window industry, Siri is unlikely to know the differences between a surface-fix and a concealed hinge tilt and turn system. In these types of situations, you want to speak to a real person, and fast.

Fabricators and installers are looking for quality products, good choice and reliable supply and delivery. On the occasions where things don’t go quite right, they want the assurance that customer service and support will resolve any issues. At VBH, we take the best elements of new technology and also offer the personal support our customers need. We’ve introduced several new initiatives to help them order and sell efficiently, and with confidence.

Our VBH24 Webshop has recently been updated with a new Product Configurator, designed to help users generate complicated hardware specifications for products such as the afore-mentioned tilt-and-turn windows, bi-folding doors, the Invisifold system, stable doors, lift/slide and tilt/slide patio doors. It covers greenteQ, Maco, Roto, Siegenia, Yale and GU products across PVC-U, aluminium and timber fabrication. Specs are kept fully up to date by the Technical Team when manufacturers advise of a change, and for users, it’s as straightforward as answering a few questions to generate the required hardware. This can then be exported straight into a shopping basket, a real time-saver, and sent to VBH as an order. It only takes a few seconds to pull up a specification and order it, 24/7.

Customers say VBH24 is a great way to manage their stocks – it allows users to see the status of all existing orders, regardless of how they were placed. Stock levels and prices can be checked, ‘Favourites Lists’ can be set up, and customers can view their dedicated Sales and Customer Service contacts at VBH, download catalogues and literature, select delivery options and view past invoices. Since we launched the new configurator, we’ve seen the highest ever sales via the VBH24 Webshop, increasing month-on-month over June, July and August – with a 58% increase from August 2017.

Our customers can order what they want, when they want it, quickly and easily. However, if they need help on more complex specifications, or just want to speak to a person, our in-house Technical and Customer Services Teams are available by phone or email, Monday to Friday.

Of course, service and support aren’t just about ordering – it’s about using a supplier you can rely on, in terms of the product and the delivery. Our OTIF rate for August, for example, was 97.3% - and we’re so confident in the quality of the hardware we supply we created the best multi-brand guarantee there is. Our Q-secure guarantee means installers can convey that confidence to homeowners.

No ‘small print’

The Q-secure guarantee is unique, and we think it’s the strongest, most comprehensive guarantee available. It covers all the hardware on windows, residential doors and folding patio doors, giving homeowners complete peace of mind for security. It’s a great selling tool for installers – it offers simplicity, with one guarantee for the full range of suited products instead of individual manufacturer guarantees.

In addition to the greenteQ range, Q-secure covers Hoppe, Maco, Roto, Securistyle, Siegenia and Yale products that have all been included in our PAS24 test programme at BSI, which was carried out on a variety of profiles. Q-secure also helps installers maintain regular contact with homeowners, as a condition of the guarantee is regular maintenance of products – building relationships and increasing the chance to upsell. If there’s a break-in due to hardware failure, we’ll pay out up to £3,250 to the homeowner. There’s no small print, or ridiculous caveats to exclude real life use of products, and it’s free for fabricators and installers to sign up.

Thinking of updating the way you order hardware?  Call today on 01634 263263 or email sales@remove-this.vbhgb.com and our Customer Services team will be in touch.

This article first appered in the October issue of Clearview magazine

Composite and timber door manufacturers using locks with a high-level Euro profile cylinder position can now use a fully suited solution from greenteQ.  The new cylinder pulls and circular escutcheons are available in six stunning finishes.

The cylinder pull shrouds the profile cylinder, providing a 20mm underhang so the user can pull the door open or closed. The underhang is ideal on doors where there is no other ‘pull point’, such as a handle or pad, and discourages misuse of the profile cylinder key or the letterbox flap to open the door. The 51mm diameter circular escutcheon has no underhang and is chamfered to combat unlawful removal.

Internal and external components for both the cylinder pull and circular escutcheons are sold separately, allowing door fabricators to mix and match colours on the inside and outside slab. Colour matched fixings are sold with the internal hardware. For external pulls and escutcheons, a flange is in place to prevent cylinder removal. The two products can also be mixed and matched, as both have a fixing centre of 38mm.

Gary Gleeson, Marketing Manager at VBH comments: “Both the cylinder pull and circular escutcheon have been designed with security in mind, as well as appearance. The greenteQ 10-year guarantee also comes as standard across the range.”

The greenteQ range is a growing suite of window and door furniture, colour-matched for a seamless and integrated look.

To find out more, call 01634 263 263, visit www.vbhgb.com and follow @vbhgreenteQ.

This text first appeared in the industry press throughout August and September 2018

This article from Simon Monks appeared in the July issue of Glass & Glazing Products magazine

WH Smith was recently voted the worst high street retailer in the UK (Which? 2018[1]), with customers complaining of out-of-date stores, expensive products and poor customer service. WH Smith has failed to adapt its business model to cater for customers who want more than new colouring pencils and a newspaper. It got me thinking. What is great customer service? What exactly do customers need from a hardware supplier? How can we make that person’s job – in closing a sale, ordering hardware for 500 units or putting a problem right – easier?

Differentiate your company from the competition

Customers need products they can rely on. Put another way, they need products where the risk of purchase is minimal. And fabricators and installers want confidence that the buck doesn’t stop with them, if something goes wrong.

That’s one of the key reasons we launched the Q-secure guarantee last year. Q-secure is unique, and in our view the strongest, most comprehensive guarantee in the market. It covers all the hardware on windows, residential doors and folding patio doors, giving homeowners complete peace of mind for security. It’s a great selling tool for installers – homeowners love the peace of mind it brings, and it offers simplicity, with one guarantee for the full range of suited products instead of individual manufacturer guarantees.

We’re very confident in the quality of the hardware we supply, but installers need to convey that confidence to homeowners. So, we created the best multi-brand guarantee there is. There’s no small print, or ridiculous caveats to exclude real life use of products. Approved installers give the guarantee to their customers. It’s free for fabricators and installers to sign up. In addition to the greenteQ range, Q-secure covers Hoppe, Maco, Roto, Securistyle, Siegenia and Yale products that have all been included in our PAS24 test programme at BSI, which was carried out on a variety of profiles. Q-secure also helps installers maintain regular contact with homeowners, as a condition of the guarantee is regular maintenance of products – building relationships and increasing the chance to upsell. If there’s a break-in due to hardware failure, we’ll pay out up to £3,250 to the homeowner.

Customers told us they want to differentiate themselves and win business for positive reasons, rather than win it by cutting prices. And they don’t want the hassle (and potential for mistakes) of dealing with several hardware companies. One customer I spoke to bought from eight different suppliers! We solved his problem by streamlining his ordering and centralising his supply of 3rd party branded products alongside his greenteQ hardware through VBH, which made ordering much more manageable. The added benefit of online ordering simplified the process even further.

Our ‘two-way’ close relationship with customers makes VBH stand out. Our in-house technical team provides know-how to customers, carries out R&D on greenteQ products developed for the UK and has over 110 years’ experience across hardware supply, glass processing, fabrication, installation and sales. Some customers have been with us since the start! Tradesmith, a trade fabricator in Sussex, has been with VBH since it started 25 years ago. I like to catch up with MD, Mark Hutchinson, and hear his feedback on what’s working and what isn’t. Tradesmith uses greenteQ’s suited range as its standard furniture option and our Coastline range for coastal properties.

 10/10 from Garrard Windows

Buckinghamshire-based fabricator Garrard Windows has been a VBH customer for over 10 years. It fabricates around 2,500 products a week using VBH’s greenteQ door hinges and handles, window handles and profile cylinders. Our VBH24 webshop makes it easier for Garrard to check stock levels, prices and the progress of their orders from VBH. Using the product configurator, they calculate the exact hardware required for complex installation jobs such as Invisifold slide & fold doors.

Adam Webb, Garrard Director, says: “The greenteQ range has grown considerably, so there is a product to fit every requirement. Using the webshop, we don’t have to spend time working out what we need for each job. After our initial nervousness – it seemed a bit daunting at first, compared to the usual hand-written faxes – we haven’t looked back. It even helps us produce tenders. All we do is add the product number and quantity and it works it out for us. The favourites list which keeps track of our most regularly ordered items is really useful. It’s a no-hassle process that saves us time – and time’s money. If there’s a query we talk to VBH and know we’ll get a swift response.”

Whether customers order online through VBH24 or phone to order, they’re assigned a designated Customer Services Co-ordinator (CSC). Along with the Area Sales Managers, CSCs ensure a personal service for each customer. We have three Hubs across the UK – Kent, East Kilbride and Swansea - to ensure maximum coverage.

VBH has the latest innovation in hardware and guarantees, unbeatable ranges with security options and reliable service and support. Thinking of streamlining your hardware buying? Call today on 01634 263263 or email sales@remove-this.vbhgb.com and our Customer Services team will be in touch.

 


[1]https://news.sky.com/story/whsmith-rated-uks-worst-high-street-shop-by-which-11387874

This article by Rob Norman appeared in the August issue of Clearview magazine

Homeowners feel vulnerable when they hear some police forces have stopped investigating burglaries. They say it’s because they don’t have the time or budget to investigate them, and the chances of bringing someone to book are very low.

Homeowners also puzzle over conflicting reports about crime. Depending on the source of statistics, the type of crime, how it’s recorded, and who is recording it, crime may be going down or going up! It’s confusing, and your risk of being a crime statistic also depends on where you are and who you are.

According to the ONS, the average person in England has a 2.4% chance of being burgled[1]. We hear a lot about crime, which drives our perceptions and fears, and that’s crucial because it’s perceptions not risks that set the context for selling. The reality is, crime is a postcode lottery and unless you live in a high crime spot, you’re unlikely to be burgled, whatever your perceptions. If you or someone who lives near you has been burgled, you also stand a much higher chance of being burgled again.

Fabricators and installers shouldn’t rely on fear and scaremongering tactics to win new business, however it’s important to focus on preventative measures that would stop any would-be burglar before they have a chance to get in.

If asked, homeowners think they are buying security with their doors and windows, and they expect the locks and hardware on their doors and windows to withstand break-ins. They look for the peace of mind and reassurance that comes from secure products that are backed by a solid and effective manufacturer’s guarantee.

But once you start looking at guarantees from the homeowner’s point of view, few stand up to scrutiny. Many are vague or buried under pages of small print and slippery legalese, so it’s hard to see what is really guaranteed. Some are worded with what looks suspiciously like get-out conditions and clauses – so they’re hard to claim against. Very few inspire confidence in homeowners. Very few give installers the backing they need to sell with confidence.

VBH took the view that if the products perform as promised, as we know they do, the cost of homeowners claiming against you will be small so why not give homeowners the real thing? And why not give installers a strong and effective guarantee in plain English that ‘does what it says on the tin’; one that gives homeowners the reassurance they want and gives installers a powerful selling tool?

The best multi-brand guarantee

Our Q-secure guarantee is unique and the most comprehensive on the market. It covers all window and door hardware on a window or door, utilising products from across VBH’s greenteQ range. It also covers windows and doors manufactured in accordance with VBH’s Document Q specification. Casement window products include the greenteQ Delta friction stay, greenteQ Alpha Espagnolette and Monkey Tail handles, and locking systems from Maco, Roto and Yale. Tilt and turn windows are covered with the Alpha TBT tilt & turn handle used with Maco, Roto and Siegenia security perimeter hardware.

The choices for residential door hardware includes door locks from greenteQ, Maco and Yale, the greenteQ Alpha 2* and standard lever handle, Coastline stainless-steel lever handle, Sigma hybrid door hinges, the Q-Star 1* cylinder (when combined with the Alpha 2* handle), Kappa and Coastline Victorian Urn door knockers, and Yale 3* cylinders. Our Invisifold Slide & Fold and Clearspan bi-folding systems are also covered when the door is made to our PAS24 specification.

In addition to the greenteQ range, Q-secure covers Hoppe, Maco, Roto, Securistyle, Siegenia and Yale products that have all been included in our PAS24 test programme at BSI, which was carried out on a variety of profiles. Q-secure also helps installers maintain regular contact with homeowners, as a condition of the guarantee is regular maintenance of products – building relationships and increasing the chance to upsell. If there’s a break-in due to hardware failure, we’ll pay out up to £3,250 to the homeowner – it’s that simple. Best of all, it’s free for fabricators and installers to sign up.

Working together to create bespoke solutions

VBH also works closely with fabricators to develop bespoke security solutions that meet PAS24 and Doc-Q compliancy. Leading timber fabricator, Glyngary has worked with VBH and Accoya to develop a door specification and security hardware package for doors and windows. The package includes Yale stainless-steel locks and the greenteQ Coastline door furniture range, with the Yale Rapide aluminium locking system on windows – all are corrosion resistant. The furniture has a 25-year guarantee against pitting, on top of the Q-secure guarantee.

For more information on Q-secure call 01634 263263 or email sales@remove-this.vbhgb.com and a member of our Customer Services team will be in touch. Visit www.qsecure.co.uk for further details.

 


[1]https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41178903

Not only was July an amazingly successful month for sales overall, it was also another cracking month for our webshop.
In terms of web-sales it was our second best month ever, but what really pleased us is that that more VBH customers than ever before used VBH24 to place their orders with us.  
More and more customers are finding that placing and tracking orders, and checking prices and availability whenever they want is easy with VBH24.
Register for access by clicking here   

This story appeared in the trade press during July/August 2018

Europe’s largest window and door hardware distributor, VBH (GB) has achieved an outstanding 97.1% on time, in full (OTIF) delivery to its customers during May. With thousands of product configurations and tens of thousands of components from its own greenteQ and other leading brands, this is impressive customer service.

With branches in Kent, Swansea and East Kilbride, VBH has a distribution centre in three of the home countries (with Northern Ireland being largely supplied via East Kilbride) ensuring true national coverage. Mark Skudder, VBH Logistics Director comments: “The OTIF figure takes into account sales of our own greenteQ branded products, as well as those from our main partners including Glazpart, Hoppe, Maco, Roto, Securistyle, Siegenia and Yale. 

“Any delivery delays, of even the smallest item, can have an impact on the timely fabrication or installation of a product. Homeowners expecting an installation don’t want to hear about a missing handle. They want what they ordered when it was promised without excuses.

“We’re particularly proud of the 97.1% figure as May was a very busy month with sales over 8% up on the previous year. greenteQ sales increased by more than 35% over the same period. This clearly shows that our strategy of developing greenteQ products such as the Clearspan Bi-fold and Invisifold slide & fold ranges to sit alongside our 3rd party offering is working well.”

Stock in each VBH depot is tailored to the requirements of the region, with the popularity of different product lines sometimes varying around the country. VBH’s Q-secure guarantee is available on a large proportion of these products, covering against hardware failure in case of burglaries and break-ins.

Another example of VBH’s commitment to customer service, the VBH24 web shop has a newly updated product configurator that makes ordering easy. It shows customers the exact hardware required on complex installations such as tilt and turns, bi-folds or greenteQ Invisifold slide & folds. Alternatively, expert staff are on hand to process orders received over the phone or via email. Mark points out “We’ve seen a significant increase in the amount of customers using our web shop since the updates. Not only do they benefit from the easier navigation and the configurator function, but they also receive free standard delivery on orders over £100.”

For more information about VBH and the service and support available, call Gary Gleeson on 01634 263263, tweet @VBHGB or email sales@remove-this.vbhgb.com.

Buckinghamshire fabricator Garrard Windows has been a customer of hardware distributor VBH for more than 10 years. Manufacturing around 2,500 products a week, including PVC-U and aluminium windows, bifold and patio doors, Garrard uses VBH door hinges and handles, window handles and door cylinders across its whole range. Adam Webb, Director of Garrard, has seen many changes over the years as both companies have grown.

“Since we started working with VBH we’ve seen steady growth in our business,” says Adam. “The support we’ve had from them has been great – their systems make it easy to do business. The greenteQ range has grown considerably, so there is a product to fit every requirement, and using the webshop means we don’t have to spend time working out what we need for each job. After our initial nervousness – it did seem a bit daunting at first, compared to hand written faxes which we’d been using before – we haven’t looked back. In one operation we can see what we need for the job, stock levels, prices and the progress of our orders. It can even help us produce tenders – all we have to do is add the product number and quantity and it’s worked out for us. The favourites list which keeps track of our most regularly ordered items is also really useful. It’s a no hassle process that saves us time – and time’s money. And of course, if there is any query we can always talk to VBH and know we’ll get a swift response.”

“Even though VBH is the largest hardware supplier in Europe,” continues Adam, “the team never loses sight of the customers’ need for efficient ordering and reliable deliveries. We’re seeing a big demand for colour now. VBH has responded with a great selection, whether for PVC-U or aluminium. I rate them 10 out of 10 for customer service and the same for product quality and performance.”

Visit www.vbhgb24.com to register and start an order or call Gary Gleeson, VBH Marketing Manager on 01634 263263 to get online now.

Congratulations to our Marketing Manager, Gary Gleeson, who celebrates 25 years service with VBH on 2nd August 2018.

Having originally joined the Wagner warehouse team in 1984, Gary moved into the internal sales team in '85 and then into the technical department before leaving to gain valuable experience at Maco and Roto in 1989.

The opportunity arose to re-join VBH in 1993 as Technical Manager and Gary eventually moved into his current position in 2010.

Gary says, "The phrase 'man and boy' certainly applies to my two stints at Wagner/VBH. I enjoyed my time at Maco and Roto immensely, but when I got the chance to return to VBH it was an easy decision to make, as I relished the thought of being able to help customers with such a wide selection of products from different manufacturers. I also knew most of the team and knew that they were a great bunch"

"Some things don't change. We've still got a massive portfolio of products to work with, but with the added benefit of our own greenteQ range, and the people here are all still top notch, even though some of them weren't born when I came back!"

The following story appeared in the trade press thoughout July 2018

Leading hardware supplier VBH (GB) has reported a 15% year-on-year increase in sales for its hardware for aluminium bi-folding doors. This is due to the expanding greenteQ Clearspan range and the newly launched Alpha Slim Lever Handle. Further growth is expected in the summer months.

VBH Aluminium Product Manager Rob Norman comments: “This trend is down to strong consumer demand for aluminium products, in particular bi-fold doors. The Clearspan range was designed with each part of the supply chain in mind: manufacturers, installers and end-users, with no routing of the aluminium profile resulting in quicker fabrication and fitting, before the end user benefits from the smooth action. The rollers and hinges are custom made and configured to fit each profile system specifically, to ensure perfect operation on the popular Smart and AluK profile systems. As well as comfort in use and long-life, Clearspan has been tested at BSI to PAS24, meaning a Document Q compliant option is available. This option also benefits from the added assurance of being covered by the Q-secure multi-brand security guarantee.”

The newest addition to the Clearspan range, the Alpha Slim Handle Set, is ideal for doors made from slim sash profiles, including aluminium bi-fold doors and slim section residential doors. With a backplate that measures just 26mm, and a specially raked lever, it eliminates backplate overhang and reduces the risk of clashing against the outer frame when opening. It uses the same door prep as the greenteQ Alpha and Coastline handles, is covered by a 10-year guarantee and is fully suited, available in five greenteQ finishes.

Sales of products suitable for aluminium Tilt & Turn windows are also growing. The range includes Roto, Siegenia and Maco options suitable for Alu-groove and Eurogroove profiles alike.

Rob adds: “We’re capitalising on the trend by identifying new stainless-steel hardware products suitable for the UK aluminium market and will be expanding the greenteQ Serenity range of handles for aluminium doors and sliding patio doors.”

All of VBH’s aluminium range can be purchased through VBH24, the updated webshop which makes it easy for customers to check stock levels, prices and track the progress of orders.

This article by Simon Monks appeared in Windows Active magazine in March 2018

For years Toys R Us ruled the high street, but no-one was surprised when it went into administration late February. The chain couldn’t compete on price and convenience with online retailers like Amazon. But why did Toys R Us fail when other high street stores thrived? Commentators criticised management for failing to evolve to meet changing consumer expectations. Toys R Us didn’t recognise customers’ needs for a better, more interactive instore experience, for example. The store’s format hadn’t changed since the 1980s and it looks dated. It fell behind other successful ‘bricks and mortar’ shops. In the new Lego store, visitors can try out and build the latest models with the help of staff assigned to play-stations in-store.

On the surface, Lego and windows have little in common but the foundations of a successful business model are the same – the need to adapt to changing customer demands. Whether you’re a large high street retailer or a local retail installer, you need to evolve with the changing times to give your customers the products, service and experience they want.

Performance and choice

Windows and doors are big ticket items and while some homeowners are driven primarily by cost, price is only one of the deciding factors for a growing number of customers. Energy efficiency, security and long-lasting performance are expected, but it’s the ‘extras’, the good looks and sleek design that make a product stand out and turn it into a ‘must have’. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution: one homeowner’s dream buy may be a widespan patio door that adds a feeling of space and light, and that brings the outdoors in. Or it could be a vibrant front door with colour-matched hardware. Other homeowners lust after heritage windows to add character to their properties. Customers expect choice, and installers that don’t offer choice will struggle to please them.

Hardware is often overlooked

Hardware is sometimes overlooked but the right range of window and door furniture gives installers another sales advantage. Nothing spoils a sleek patio door like a clunky mismatched handle. With this in mind, we developed greenteQ – VBH’s own range of high quality, reliable hardware. greenteQ is a growing suite of window and door furniture, colour matched for a seamless, integrated look. The range includes a choice of styles and finishes to complement all types of windows and doors. Our new matt-brushed stainless-steel pull handles, for example, are ideal for composite, timber, PVC-U and glass doors. The handles come in a choice of stylish designs and form part of the greenteQ Coastline range.

Properties near the sea and in high pollution areas need special consideration so the Coastline range is designed to withstand the elements and polluted air in coastal and other aggressive environments. It’s been tested to BS EN ISO 9227:2012 for exceptional corrosion resistance and comes with a 25-year guarantee.

greenteQ Invisifold, another recent innovation, is a unique slide and fold system for doors and windows that allows each sash to be moved individually for a full opening, or positioned as you please for controlled ventilation. Importantly it folds outside, so it takes up no valuable living space inside the home.

Peace of mind for end-users

Homeowners expect their new windows and doors to keep intruders out but a money-backed guarantee is an effective ‘risk-reversal’ sales aid that can help installers clinch the deal. We launched our Q-secure guarantee to give homeowners peace of mind and it’s a powerful installers’ selling tool. In the unlikely event of a break-in resulting from hardware failure, homeowners will receive up to £3,250 compensation. We designed the guarantee around our greenteQ range but it also covers other top-quality brands distributed through VBH.

The following story appeared in the trade press during July/August 2018

Fabricators, installers, specifiers and homeowners can all benefit from peace of mind in high-corrosion coastal areas with the industry leading 25-year guarantee for the Coastline suite. Part of the greenteQ range, the popular Coastline suite is produced from Grade 304 stainless-steel, so it’s exceptionally resistant to corrosion from aggressive coastal weather. Sales have increased by 30% over the last 12 months, with the Coastline letterboxes in particular doubling in sales.

The suite includes a long backplate lever/lever door handle, a letterbox and Victorian urn door knockers (with or without viewing hole). Finishes include PVD gold, chrome and brushed and polished stainless-steel.

Adrian Gale, VBH Product Manager for timber and composite doors explains how Coastline came about: “VBH customers asked for stainless-steel versions of our standard furniture that were designed for aggressive coastal environments. We listened and came up with a proper solution – a suite of fittings which withstand the harshest conditions. Coastline has been subjected to more than 1,000 hours salt spray testing to BS EN ISO 9227, and suits all styles and materials of door, including composite, PVC-U, timber and aluminium.

“From a sales point of view, the most valuable part is the 25-year Coastline guarantee – it sets us miles apart from our nearest competitors and is a measure of our confidence in the suite. All of the Coastline suite is interchangeable with our standard Alpha, Omega and Kappa products so it’s easy to upgrade existing hardware or fabricate two lines at the same time and benefit from the higher profit margins associated with supplying a premium product!”  

The entire Coastline suite is also covered by the comprehensive Q-secure guarantee, the multi-brand security performance guarantee from VBH. It covers all the hardware on windows, residential doors and folding patio doors, giving homeowners complete peace of mind for security. It’s a great selling tool for installers – homeowners will love the peace of mind it brings and it offers simplicity, with one guarantee for the full range of suited products they sell instead of individual manufacturer guarantees.  In the event of a break in due to hardware failure, VBH will pay up to £3,250 to the homeowner for associated costs and insurance claims. Visit www.qsecure.co.uk for more information.   

This article by Adrian Gale appeared in the May issue of Glass Times magazine

The housing market got off to a subdued start in 2018. The number of sales, new buyers and properties joining the market has fallen in the first few months, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.[1] Uncertainty over Brexit is also expected to affect both house prices and the growth, or downturn, of the market.

Property expert Sarah Beeny recently reminded homeowners[2] that with the selling season approaching, upgrading their front door with new hardware gives their home the “wow factor”. Retrofitting new handles, a letterplate and knocker on a tired door can be a cost-effective solution. Equally, replacing an old door for new is an easy way to entice potential buyers who want a lot of ‘bang for their buck’ when it comes to quality, security and hardware suited to their home environment.

A new composite door and matching hardware gives properties an instant facelift and refreshes a home’s character. It’s an easy win for the installer, and a worthwhile investment for the homeowner. As Yogesh Gopal, Managing Director at Everglade Windows based in London explains: “We’re a large fabricator of PVCu, composite and aluminium doors, and the composite door market is a growing area for us. Anthracite Grey composite doors with white on the inside is a particular trend we’re noticing.”

The right hardware speaks volumes

With premium composite doors, it’s important to have the right hardware. We’re seeing increased demand from homeowners looking for a matching suite that can be applied across a complete door and window installation. With five different core finishes to choose from, VBH’s greenteQ suite provides a premium hardware solution with products suitable for composite, timber, aluminium and PVCu doors and windows. So, whether a homeowner wants a traditional Chartwell Green door with suited polished chrome hardware, or a contemporary Anthracite Grey slab with subtle satin chrome or black furniture, they can have it with greenteQ.

“Our customers are spoilt for choice with colour options, door styles and the greenteQ hardware we offer – and every door is as unique as the customer who orders it!”, adds Yogesh.

Hardware that beats the elements – and the burglars!

In addition, we’ve developed a stainless-steel Coastline range specifically for those in coastal and other aggressive environments. With lever handles, pull handles, letterboxes, hinges and knockers passing the 1,000 hour neutral salt spray test, the range meets the requirements of BS EN ISO 9227:2012 for exceptional corrosion resistance. Even better, it comes with a 25-year guarantee against failure and defects - that sells doors.

Security is the highest priority for homeowners on their new doors and windows. Most break-ins are through the door. With that in mind, we created the Q-secure guarantee, which is available on greenteQ products and selected partner brands. The guarantee is designed to cover any expenses resulting from a home intrusion. We’re so confident of our security, strength and performance that VBH will pay homeowners up to £3,250 compensation if they are burgled as a result of hardware failure on windows, doors or patios. Installers can easily sign up for the guarantee – and if the home is sold, the guarantee can be transferred to the new owner.

Peace of mind for installers

We developed greenteQ to suit a range of tastes and styles of properties, with the ability to colour-match all hardware. It’s also been developed with the installer in mind. Our newest solution for composite doors does just that. The Sigma Face-Fix Composite Door Hinge is designed to help an installer fit a composite door quickly and safely, in both standard and 1D-adjustable versions. It’s designed to be compatible with all composite doors and will fit directly into the frame prep of one of the leading door manufacturers.

This was a major factor in encouraging Everglade to switch and enhance their composite doors: “The new greenteQ Sigma Face-Fix hinge gives us everything we need in terms of appearance, features and performance, so we have now switched our composites fabrication to include the new hinge”, adds Yogesh.

VBH’s greenteQ range is a growing suite of window and door furniture, colour-matched for a seamless, integrated look. To find out more about the latest additions to the VBH greenteQ range, call 01634 263300 today or visit www.vbhgb.com.

 


[1]https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/feb/08/uk-housing-market-gets-off-to-subdued-start-in-2018-estate-agents-say

[2]https://www.msn.com/en-gb/money/homeandproperty/sarah-beeny-urges-home-owners-to-spruce-up-properties-as-selling-season-looms/ar-AAvetDf?li=AA64tF&ocid=mailsignout

This story appeared in the trade press in May 2018

VBH (GB) has added a new composite door hinge to its greenteQ range.  The new Sigma Face-Fix Composite Door Hinge comes in standard or 1D-adjustable versions and is available in five colours to match the greenteQ suite.

Adrian Gale, Timber & Composite Door Product Manager at VBH (GB) comments: “The new hinge is designed to help the installer fit a composite door quickly and safely. We’ve designed it so that it suits all composite doors and will actually fit directly into the frame prep of one of the leading manufacturers. The adjustable version allows for a +/- 2mm lateral adjustment on site, which makes it easy for installers to get the perfect fit.”

The new hinge features a steel frame plate with five countersunk fixing points, providing a strong connection to the outer frame, and the sash component is fixed to the door with four screw fixings. Elongated fixing holes on the standard version provide flexibility in the factory or on site. Strong fixing points and a five-knuckle construction prevent the hinge from dropping once it’s installed and the pre-lubricated hinge point ensures an exceptionally smooth action.

The sash component is finished with an attractive metal curved cover, which in the 1D-adjustable version allows access to the lateral adjustment screw, so the door can be quickly adjusted in-situ.

VBH’s greenteQ range is a growing suite of window and door furniture, colour-matched for a seamless and integrated look. To find out more about the latest addition to the VBH greenteQ range, call 01634 263300 or visit www.vbhgb.com

This story appeared in the trade press from April - June 2018

Following growing demand for VBH products, particularly the expanding greenteQ range, VBH has appointed two new Regional Sales Managers (RSM) for its UK operation. Adrian Gale will be responsible for the region comprising the Midlands, Northern England and Wales, while Dan Powell will be responsible for Southern England and Wales.

Adrian Gale has been in the industry for 28 years, having worked for a number of hardware manufacturers and distributors. He joined VBH in 2016 as Timber & Composite Door Product Manager – a role he will continue alongside his RSM duties.

He comments: “I have been in the industry for a good few years now and have seen huge changes over the years – mostly for the better, though I do miss some of the characters from back in the day! We have a very skilled team here at VBH, covering all aspects of the business and most importantly we are all striving towards the same goal – success!”

Dan Powell, currently Maintenance & Locksmiths Product Manager, will take on the additional role of RSM for the southern part of the country. Dan has worked for VBH since 2013, when he moved from a hardware distributor. He’s looking forward to the new challenge, saying: “Since I joined VBH the greenteQ range has grown from an unknown industry name to one of the most trusted and reliable brands supplying the PVC-u, aluminium and timber markets. VBH has one of the most experienced sales teams in the UK and in addition to greenteQ we distribute a range of well-known brand suppliers such as Maco, Roto, Siegenia and Yale. With this back-up, taking up the post of Regional Sales Manager is an exciting opportunity. I’m looking forward to meeting new customers and being part of the greenteQ revolution!”