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Independent Flooring Group conference

The new Independent Flooring Group held its inaugural conference and supplier Sessions on 11 and 12 March at the new premises of The Witch Group in Altham, Lancashire.

‘At the new Independent Flooring Group, we have developed a new concept in digital distribution over the last couple of years,’ says CEO Ken Robb.

‘Through our 14 launch members and with more to come, our distribution system enables on and offline retailers, contractors and installers to order products on their phone, tablet, laptop, or computer for fast delivery anywhere in the UK from the common stockholdings of our local member network. Our focus is on a high quality/value ratio with an initial range offering covering key ‘under the floor’ products like underlay, adhesives, screeds, and accessories.’

Members at the Supplier Sessions

The IFG system aims to be faster, more efficient, and greener. It is claimed that a new ‘ordered centrally, delivered locally’ concept will cut out literally millions of wasted delivery miles in a single year and has a particular benefit for online retailers who may be based in, say, the south of England, but require delivery in the north.

Kenton Penny and John Hennebry with Robbie Thomson

At the conference, IFG members learned about new ways of working and a new ethos that puts ‘greener’ products and working practices at the heart of its mission. As an example, the new TG Floorgear range includes recyclable, upcycled underlays and spray adhesives that do not include dichloromethane. ‘We are working closely with manufacturers to develop new product concepts that will lead the industry towards a greener future,’ continues Ken Robb. ‘As a result, we engage with manufacturers more as partners than as our ’opponents in a pricing battle!’  

The Group have trademarks on the TG and Floorgear brands that carry its’ concept to market. ‘TG’ stands for ‘True Grip’, the name featured on its Adhesive and Carpet Gripper ranges, with ‘Floorgear’ covering its wider product ranges.  

Gary Miller of Scotland Flooring Supplies with Nigel Davies of AFT

‘TG Floorgear carries a ‘no fuss, no problem, great quality, great value’ ethos that an increasingly digitally driven trade will respond to’, says Brad Patterson, MD of IFG member Bournemouth Flooring Supplies. ‘Installers want a screed that flows well, gripper that doesn’t warp or splinter and adhesives that do what they say they do. Retailers and contractors want decent product at a decent price – simply put – this is what we are about.’

Another key IFG difference is provided by one of its members; ‘Floorstars – The National Installation Service.’

Online sellers of flooring are now based all over the UK and growing rapidly, but they lose out on the further market penetration of a Vertical Service Package, enabling them to add a fully fitted service to their offer – anywhere in the UK.

Brad Patterson of Bournemouth FS meets Jake Hodder and Stewart Lacey of Bostik

Through its partnership with Floorstars, The Independent Flooring Group offers the first national fulfilment model for the flooring industry, stocking and providing locally across the UK for collection and installation by Floorstars. ‘This unique combination offers endless opportunities for those who aim to deliver the advantages of a digital approach,’ continued Brad, ‘With the product and installation service marketed as a composite offer.’



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