One stop shop

Asa McGillian
Asa McGillian

Glass Times talks to Apeer’s managing director, Asa McGillian, who explains how the company has developed a complete composite door offering thanks to its Apeer44 and Apeer70 ranges.

The vast majority of composite sales across the UK are for 44mm doors,” says Asa McGillian, managing director of Apeer. “That doesn’t just apply to us, it’s the same for all manufacturers and its due to the simple fact that they are a more affordable option.

“But demand at the higher end of the market is still strong, and actually, we could see a shift towards our more premium 70mm offer if economic conditions continue to become more challenging.

“Either way, we are well prepared to support our customers,” he continues. “Our Apeer70 range is market leading, not just in terms of design options and quality of finish but in the strength of the doors and the performance on offer.

“And our recently launched Apeer44 range means we can also service ongoing volume demand with a product that delivers a premium aesthetic but a more attractive price point – we’re now a genuine one-stop shop!”

That Apeer finds itself in such a strong position is not by chance. By working closely with its network of retail partners, the Northern Ireland based firm has its finger on the pulse and has always been able to keep in step with consumer demands as a result.

In fact, it is very often ahead of the curve on home improvement trends, as evidenced by the success of its smooth skinned, aluminium alternative Silka finish, an innovation that has since evolved into a complete suite of Silka aluminium products.

And constant product development is supported by a commitment to investment. Apeer’s already expansive manufacturing facility has most recently been bolstered by the arrival of a new, £150,000 CNC machine, with a new £300k Stuga sawing & machining centre due to arrive in April and a new IG line is pencilled in for later this summer – again, representing an additional six figure sum.

As a result of all this, Apeer’s customers are in an enviable position to enjoy two of the most comprehensive composite door offerings on the market.

For the single rebate Apeer44 range, the company developed 13 new door designs from scratch, introduced a fresh, contemporary suite of glass designs and hardware and created a new brochure – including a big splash on the highly anticipated ‘Silka’ inspired smooth skinned options.

Offering Secured by Design approval and a 10-year guarantee, Apeer44 delivers a premium aesthetic and quality, but without the premium price tag.

The Apeer70 range takes things a step further, thanks to a double rebated, twin seal design that delivers exceptional thermal and acoustic performance and the most expansive and unique range of options on the market.

Engineered around an expanded foam and steel core that ensures optimum security, Apeer70 doors are inherently strong. Issues with bowing and warping – the curse of lesser composites – have been taken out of the equation.

Importantly, perhaps now more than ever, Apeer70 also provides outstanding energy efficiency, with a U value of 0.8 W/m2k for solid doors and 0.9 to 0.95 W/m2k for doors with glass cassettes, depending on the area that’s glazed.

This, argues Asa, could prove to be a particularly strong selling point as the UK market braces itself for the next round of Part L regulations that are expected in 2025.

“The general economic outlook remains unclear, one minute we are being told that we’re in recession, and the next that the recession might not happen at all,” he says. “The housing market may have cooled but house prices remain relatively high and so it seems, does consumer confidence.

“But one thing that is definitely coming down the line are tighter future homes standards in 2025 and a requirement for products that deliver better energy efficiency. That will initially impact on new build, but eventually the retail sector will have to fall in line – a situation where 70mm doors could become more prominent.

“If that’s the case, well, we’re well prepared for it,” he concludes. “And in the meantime, we’re also equipped to cater for whatever the industry has in store for us. That means the best products, designed to meet all the market’s demands.”