Continued investment despite pandemic

Rapierstar has continued to supply fasteners to fabricators, despite shortages reported elsewhere in the industry, the company has reported.

The company continues to hold £4 million of window screw and fixings stock, and more than one billion items at its 100,000ft2 warehouse and distribution centre in Cheshire, from where it serves window and door manufacturers across Great Britain and Ireland, as well as growing exports across mainland Europe.

By holding many months of stock, the warehouse absorbs the short-term impacts of disrupted global trade of the kind caused by the pandemic, the company said.

David Furness, MD of Rapierstar, said: “There is no doubt that the Covid-19 pandemic has rocked global supply chains in every market and exposed the fragility of some of these which, with a rapid manufacturing bounce-back, now means some of our competitors are experiencing supply issues – but certainly not Rapierstar.

“We achieved 99.4% otif deliveries while smashing our best ever monthly turnover in July (up 23% YOY) and August is also flying.

“Our long-term manufacturing partners are located in Taiwan, so our supplies were never particularly under threat even when the strict economic and social restrictions started. We continued to accept and pay for pre-ordered monthly deliveries from our respected supply partners during the Covid-19 shutdown, so our stocks have never been so healthy.”

Rapierstar has continued to invest throughout 2020, with stock value increased by £1+ million and construction of its extended R&D centre. This will incorporate a video conference suite to enable improved communication with suppliers and customers post-pandemic, as well as a large showroom for demonstrating its forthcoming new product ranges, developed in-house with senior researchers in a new product development programme.

Rapierstar has also invested in its people and operations, with new apprentices and employees recruited during August, supported by the latest upgrade of its fully integrated ERP (enterprise resource planning) system, Microsoft Dynamics Business Central, and further investment in its electric commercial vehicles and new on-site charging points.