Premium without the price tag

Apeer has recently launched its Apeer44 range of single rebate, 44mm composite doors, combining premium quality without the associated cost. We catch up with the Ballymena based manufacturer’s Managing Director, Asa McGillian, to find out more.

GT: What was the inspiration for the new Apeer44 range?
Asa McGillian (AM): It was really a result of talking to our retail network. It’s really important to listen to what the market actually needs, rather than trying to second guess what’s the next best thing and that’s played a big part in the success of previous product development at Apeer.

Our smooth skinned Silka composite door for example – which was more than a year in R&D to perfect – was the result of consumer demand for an aluminium alternative entrance door, one that could match the aesthetics of aluminium casements, but offer better performance and a more attractive price tag.

The decision to develop the Apeer44 range, followed feedback from our customers about the lack of quality and poor service with competitor products, and the requirement for a single rebate, 44mm composite that could deliver premium style and performance, but at a more accessible price point.

GT: Have you created the range from scratch or were you able to adapt an existing offer?
AM: We have previously offered a 44mm, single rebate door alongside our top of the range 70mm composite, but it’s not our style to simply re-hash an existing offer.

As such, the Apeer44 range features 13 brand new door designs, which brings the total number of styles – quite neatly – to 44.

We’ve also brought in a comprehensive new collection of glass options from RegaLead, which incorporates the popular New Orleans and Aurora designs, as well as numerous new side panels and a selection of high quality, black hardware that includes pull bar and lever handles.

And of course, we wouldn’t think of launching a new range without putting some serious thought into how best to market it! That includes producing an entirely new brochure that perfectly illustrates all the new styles and options.

GT: Marketing is something that Apeer does particularly well – to what extent has building the Apeer brand over the years helped with this latest product launch?
AM: Brand awareness, that association with a top-quality product, is incredibly important for us at Apeer. We made a conscious decision to massively increase our brand building over the last few years, particularly with the introduction of slick, consumer facing videos and that’s really paying dividends now.

And as we introduce Apeer44 into the market, of course, it gives our customers a comfortable advantage from day one.

GT: From the feedback from your retail partners, can you identify any stand out trends or styles for the composite door market?
AM: Energy efficiency is obviously a big selling point at the moment, not just from the changes to requirements for Part L but also due to homeowners who are looking at investing in energy saving measures, and we are very well positioned to respond to that as all our doors are A rated by design.

As I’ve already mentioned, we’ve catered for a comprehensive range of designs and colour options with Apeer44, but if I had to highlight a standout style then it would most likely be the smooth skin finish, which comes complete with smooth glazing trims and RegaLead glass designs.

Although I’m perhaps a little biased as this is the same finish that we originally spent so long developing for our Silka 70mm composite!

We have had requests in the past for a 44mm version of Silka, and while this is being marketed firmly as an Apeer44 product, in order to avoid any confusion with the official Silka range, we’re expecting it to be a very popular option.

GT: And finally, what is your outlook for residential market as we head into 2023?
AM: It’s certainly going to be more challenging than last year, but we remain positive as ever. Despite economic conditions, there’s still demand for higher value home improvement products, and that’s why we’re particularly excited about Apeer44.

It delivers the top end aesthetics and performance that consumers are looking for, but without the premium price tag. What more could you ask for!