2023: still big opportunities despite the doom and gloom


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Jun 07, 2023

2023: still big opportunities despite the doom and gloom

Story by Editor April 27, 2023 FH Brundle DAF CF Michael Brundle, Managing Director of F.H. Brundle, gives his take on an uncertain economic situation – and why Brundle’s vast range helps its

Story by


April 27, 2023

FH Brundle DAF CF

Michael Brundle, Managing Director of F.H. Brundle, gives his take on an uncertain economic situation – and why Brundle’s vast range helps its customers adapt and thrive.

At 134 years old, F.H. Brundle tends to take a long-term view of everything.

In life, we’re often told something’s going to be disastrous or the best thing since sliced bread.

But here, we try and take a more level-headed approach – to see the pitfalls and the potential opportunities ahead of us, and navigate a way through them.

Take the economic situation for instance. It’s fair to say the picture is mixed.

For a while, the media and the government were telling us 2023 was going to be catastrophic.

Now they’ve changed their tune, and are saying there probably won’t be a recession at all.

You should always be suspicious of anyone who tells you they know what’s going to happen – with the economic situation, or anything for that matter.

No-one knows what’s lying around the corner. Covid proved that beyond doubt.

So the best we can do is take a sober look at the information we have available and come to some tentative conclusions based on it.

Since the start of the year, I’ve heard some customers and other suppliers say they’ve experienced a dip in demand. Others are still seeing very strong sales.

For a more rigorous and scientific picture of what’s going on, we can look at the latest figures produced by the Office of National Statistics.

The ONS estimates construction output increased 2.4% in volume terms in February 2023.

That’s a marked improvement on January, when output declined 1.7% and represents the highest monthly value since records began in 2010.

The increase came from rises in both repair and maintenance (4.5%) and new work (1.1%) during the month.

It’s also thought the pipeline for future commercial work remains strong – significantly, detailed planning applications are very strong, running at higher levels than before the pandemic.

There are also very promising signs from the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply’s Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI), traditionally a good indicator of construction sector performance.

The PMI is now reading above 50 for both construction and manufacturing – which suggests both sectors will see growth in Q2 and Q3.

So what does all this point to? Firstly, that the economic situation isn’t as bad as many were predicting at the end of last year. Secondly, that in construction at least, that situation appears to be improving. And thirdly, that there are lots of opportunities for companies in our sector to continue to thrive.

At Brundle, our aim is to always provide our customers with a wide range of products that allow them to adapt and thrive whatever the economic situation.

It’s possible that economic uncertainty will see a rise in people choosing to “improve, not move” – and we have a huge range of stylish, sought-after products perfect to capitalise on demand in this area of the market.

For example, our Rinato™ range of Wood Plastic Composite fencing has become highly popular.

Rinato™ WPC fencing boards are made of 60% FSC-certified recycled wood and 40% plastics, meaning they’re more sustainable than many alternatives.

They’re virtually maintenance-free – without the need for the time-consuming regular painting most timber products require, and they’re extremely quick and easy to assemble thanks to their tongue and groove boards.

Marano®, our robust, easy to maintain aluminium fencing, is another highly successful product in the residential market.

Extremely quick and simple to install, Marano® fencing products can be fixed to virtually any post and incorporated into steel gate frames.

Available in a range of finishes and colours, with a choice of 8 contemporary styles, Marano® also includes a selection of stylish decorative laser cut screens.

But we also offer a vast array of fencing and other products suited to the landscaping, commercial and public sectors too.

Products like the Nylofor 3-M offer a high level of security, and are difficult for would-be intruders to scale, while remaining almost completely transparent.

What’s more, it’s been specifically designed to be both cost-effective and quick and easy to install – it can be fitted 20% faster, and needs 20% less concrete and posts than other systems of its type.

However, it’s important to ensure that fencing designed to keep intruders out doesn’t accidentally injure the people it’s intended to protect.

That’s the benefit of Roll Top fencing, which features rolled top and bottom edges without the sharp sections that can be dangerous.

But that barely scratches the surface of what Brundle can offer – stocking thousands of different products, including gate hardware, decking, handrailing, mesh, crash barriers and much more.

That means our customers are perfectly placed to react to changing market conditions and stay successful.

I’m still optimistic about the future – I hope you are too!

For more information, call on 01708 398048, or visit www.fhbrundle.co.uk

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