Putting you in control

Dave Broxton
Dave Broxton

Diversification is the perfect way to create new opportunities, argues Bohle’s Managing Director Dave Broxton.

During 2023, Bohle celebrated 100 years in business. The secret to this success, says managing director Dave Broxton, is its ability to constantly adjust to the needs of the market.

“Cutting prices is the first step many companies take to win customers or hold on to them,” he says. “And, as part of a strategic campaign, this can probably work to your advantage.

“But the chances are if you have to compete on price, then you are probably supplying the same as everyone else, because that is the only difference.

“Instead, the smart money is providing your customers what they need, and in a changing market – like the one we are currently in – this can require some agile thinking.”

A key strategy for Bohle in 2023 was targeting the home improvement sector. Without diminishing its links to the glass processing industry, the company saw a significant opportunity supplying window installers with its own glass hardware range, including the MasterTrack FT high-end sliding door system.

“Our reasoning was two-fold,” Dave said. “On the one hand, we could see that the market for windows was going to shrink, and that if companies didn’t diversify their offering, then they may find it difficult competing from a shrinking pool of work.

“And on the other, those homeowners who were investing in refurbishment projects would very likely upgrade other parts of the home if they were replacing the windows.

“So, if you can broaden your offering to take in a wider range of home improvement opportunities, then you can take on work that would have otherwise gone to another contractor.”

Bohle took this idea to the FIT Show in May 2023, and was rewarded with a significant amount of interest from installers who were, indeed, looking to broaden their offering.

“We didn’t fill out the stand with lots of products at the FIT Show,” Dave says. “Instead, we decided to hand-pick some key products, along with bathroom hardware, fixings and clamps.

“One of those products was the MasterTrack FT, a high-end sliding door system, which attracted a surprising amount of interest.”

Dave explains that as people age, they are less likely to move out of the homes they have probably spent decades living in. This means homes that were originally designed for young families now have to be upgraded for an older generation.

“It’s not surprising that people don’t want to move out of their homes as they get older,” Dave says. “They are likely near friends and family, and the home is probably of a size that accommodates their children as and when they return home.

“Companies we talked to on our stand have recognised this trend and are installing products like the MasterTrack FT to help partition ground floor spaces.

“With the MasterTrack FT, double doors can be opened simultaneously, which are perfect for wheelchairs. Door weights up to 150kg can be accommodated, and the opening and closing mechanism will operate smoothly and silently. Plus, an anti-jump mechanism provides extra safety.”

The MasterTrack FT is installed from the front, and the job can be completed incredibly quickly. No special tools or equipment is required, so installers can be up and running in no time. This makes adding the MasterTrack FT to your product range easily and affordable, according to Dave.

“Glass doors can help partition a room or floor very easily, without taking up too much space,” Dave says. “Privacy can be offered with patterned glass, blinds and interlayers, and light can still be brought into the centre of the home.

“And it is a quality product. So, once you’ve installed it, you won’t be called back. This alone can add thousands to your bottom line, as you are not eating into your profit by replacing sub-standard parts.

“Meanwhile, you are selling on convenience and quality, not price, which puts you in control.”