Leadership, vision and collaboration
More than 400 business leaders, representing companies collectively worth £billions, met at Edgbaston Cricket Ground in October for the 2021 Glazing Summit, organised by Insight Data and Purplex Marketing.
Across a day of debates, discussions and insightful presentations, fenestration’s best and brightest pondered the huge challenges glass and glazing currently faces – and how to make the most of its opportunities.
Addressing attendees in the first of the day’s keynotes, Glazing Summit founder and CEO Andrew Scott charted the dramatic changes the sector has been through over the last ten years.
He revealed that the number of UK fabricators and installers has fallen below 14,000 for the first time, with 709 companies lost since 2011.
Later in the day, Greg Perdon, Bloomberg correspondent and CEO for Arbuthnot Latham, gave an overview of the UK’s performance relative to other major economies, and pointed to promising signs for Britain’s home improvement market in 2022.
Then, after lunch, attendees were treated to an irreverent insight into organisational culture and sales strategy from international business consultant Geoff Burch.
Throughout the day, panel debates featuring sector VIPs tackled the industry’s biggest issues.
With COP26 looming, attendees addressed climate change, and questioned whether end-users really care about the environment, and whether the industry’s much talked-about commitment to sustainability is actually just a box-ticking exercise.
Leading installers debated the soaring cost of materials, and whether the drastic price rises they’ve received are really justified given the poor quality and service many continue to experience.
Industry VIPs contemplated the supply chain crisis, the changing dynamic between customers and suppliers, and when the industry will return to pre-pandemic levels.
And a panel of experts discussed the growing number of mergers and acquisitions in fenestration, predicting further consolidation in the months and years ahead following Brexit, changes to consumer demand, and the continuing fallout of Covid.
“This year’s Glazing Summit comes at a pivotal moment in the history of our industry,” Andrew said.
“After the enormous upheavals of the pandemic, the sector now faces an unprecedented supply chain crisis, a worsening skills shortage, and the huge challenges posed by climate change.
“Navigating these issues will require leadership, vision, and collaboration between every aspect of fenestration.
“That’s exactly the sort of open and honest dialogue the Glazing Summit is designed to facilitate. After an amazing day in Edgbaston, I’m more optimistic about the future of our sector than ever.”