With effect from 1 July 2023, United Hardware, one of Ireland’s largest purchasing and marketing groups for DIY, home and garden shops, is cooperating with the EDE International AG. Both partners signed the agreement on the occasion of a visit to EDE’s headquarter in Wuppertal in May.
With group volume of around €450m, over 2000 shop staff and over 6000 products available, United Hardware is Ireland’s preferred hard goods buying group. Part of the group is the Homevalue DIY Stores & Builders Merchants brand with over 160 affiliated DIY stores, independently owned and operated by local entrepreneurs.
Freek Dekkers, Sales Director at EDE International for Northern Europe, knows: “With United Hardware, we have a strong partner at our side who is represented throughout Ireland. With its structures and suppliers, it offers the optimal conditions and thus the basis for effectively creating synergies!”
Annegret Franzen, CEO EDE International, summarises: “The success of E/D/E and EDE International AG is characterised by strong partnerships at eye level – we are very pleased to be able to enter into a promising cooperation with United Hardware in Ireland as well – with benefits for both sides.” A warm welcome United Hardware!
With 31 booths and over 220 participants, the second marketplace of the FORMATplus Group in the Czech Republic and Slovakia took place in mid-May and was used for intensive personal expert discussions.
Visitors from the Czech Republic and Slovakia were able to find out about trends and new products at 28 supplier stands as well as from the E/D/E private labels FORMAT, FORTIS and E-COLL and E/D/E Industry services. The marketplace was preceded by a networking evening, which also offered plenty of opportunity for mutual exchange. A special feature: the EDE member companies took the opportunity to invite selected customers and thus to take a look at the wide range of products and assortments together.
The feedback from the participants was positive throughout: “The visit was very stimulating. For our company, we were able to pick up a lot of impulses to expand our product ranges,” describes Ivan Polák, Managing Director of member company AG Náradie s.r.o. from Slovakia: “Our final customers were also very happy to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the marketplace.” The participating suppliers were equally satisfied: “The pleasant atmosphere and the good organization of the event helped to facilitate the exchange between participants, to meet partners from the Czech and Slovak markets, and to discuss market requirements and needs,” emphasizes Benjamin Fischer, International Account Manager at Altrex B.V. (Netherlands).
The launch of the new FORMAT homepage in Czech took place at the same time as the marketplace. “As part of our digital strategy FORMAT 3.0, the website, in addition to our own LinkedIn account, forms an essential cornerstone. We were equally pleased to be able to present the new FORMAT image film to the visitors,” says Vladimira Gimerska, EDE International Country Manager: “In addition, we organized a workshop on digital marketing with a professional sales coach for our partners, which also met with a very positive response.”
In the end, all participants were sure that the next FORMATplus Marketplace for the Czech Republic and Slovakia is firmly planned in two years. “The entirely positive feedback from our members and suppliers has once again confirmed to us how important and valuable the personal exchange among market participants is!”, Martin Ochelski, Sales Director Austria, Switzerland, Italy and Eastern Europe, sums up.
As part of the conversion of the European sales concept FORMAT 3.0, the new FORMAT website is now active in German, English, French, Dutch, Polish, Czech and Hungarian.
This means that in addition to the country profiles on LinkedIn, FORMAT is now also represented with a new website to give all interested customers an understanding of the brand, the dealer network, the product range areas as well as news and product highlights in a modern way.
Francesca Pusole Schmidt (Team Leader International Data and Catalogue Projects) was thrilled: “On our path of transformation FORMAT 3.0, the go-live of our website is a very special milestone that we have been working towards with the utmost commitment for months. At the same time, it also means the start of our Europe-wide “For all of you” brand campaign, which breathes new life into our strong FORMAT brand and presents it in a fresh and future-oriented way. However, this is only the starting signal – everyone can look forward to the future contents and developments around FORMAT!”
An absolute highlight of the website is the entire brand experience, the centrepiece of which is the new campaign film. This was realised with a lot of passion and attention to detail.
We wish Francesca and her team and of course all European FORMAT dealers many “visits” and leads as well as a lot of fun with the new highlights, events & great solutions!
Visit FORMAT on: www.formattools.eu
Within the framework of a perfectly organised members’ trip of CECOFERSA S.A. with members from Spain and Portugal from 11 – 14 May in Granada, the Annual Assembly took place on Friday, 12th May 2023.
In addition to numerous participants from the CECOFERSA membership from the Iberian Peninsula, the entire CECOFERSA sales and administration team, as well as the shareholders EHLIS and EDE International also took part.
The meeting focused on information about the current situation in the sector, the resulting challenges and, in particular, the numerous services provided by Cecofersa to the Iberian members and by the shareholders EHLIS S.A. and EDE International AG in a difficult global market environment.
The central theme here: continuing to grow together, which is firmly anchored in CECOFERSA’s philosophy with the company slogan “Crecemos Juntos!”.
A constructive and fruitful meeting, in which Rafael Martin, as advisor to the CECOFERSA Board of Directors, emphasised the topic of transparency and stability and Javier Herrera, Managing Director of CECOFERSA, never tired of stressing the many opportunities for joint cooperation. Annegret Franzen, Managing Director of EDE International, praised the organisation, sound information of the meeting and the strong and numerous participation of the members: “We are and will remain a solid, strong and loyal partner for CECOFERSA and, together with our joint venture Delcredit España, are at the disposal of the Iberian members with all our services from Wuppertal and Spain.”
On 17.04.2023, the first personal visit of the TED Group with four Italian dealers finally took place in Wuppertal. Present were the Managing Director of the TED Group, Michele Caterino and four other dealers: U.D. DISTRIBUZIONE S.R.L. (Naples), CALLEA VINCENZO S.R.L. (Monopoli), MONTINARO LUIGI S.R.L. (Lecce) and Lomotec S.r.l.s. (Catania). The cross-departmental visit was actively accompanied by colleagues from the ETRIS Bank and the Building Services Division.
EDE International has been cooperating with the TED Group since 2022. It is a subsidiary of the IGH Group consisting of 12 dealers in the Italian region with a focus on plumbing, heating and installation.
The aim of the dealers’ first visit was to get to know EDE and the people involved and, in particular, to work out concrete starting points for a cooperation. In the unusually sunny weather for Wuppertal, the guests were given a guided tour of the warehouse and were able to see for themselves our modern and efficient logistics and other services from the financial sector provided by our sister company ETRIS Bank and the building services department.
Annegret Franzen (CEO EDE International), Martin Ochelski (Sales Director & Key Accounts, Cooperations AT + CH + IT and Eastern Europe) and Carmelo Palumbo (Representative and Internal Support Italy) were happy about the interesting exchange with the Italian guests, which was rounded off by a joint dinner. Michele Caterino concluded enthusiastically: “We are overwhelmed by the performance of the EDE in general and the eLC warehouse in particular!”
Martin Ochelski added: “The first meeting was essential to present the services of E/D/E and to start the cooperation. Now we will define the next steps and successively start the cooperation with the dealers on a bilateral level”.
Good luck and success in the young cooperation!!
The Wuppertal-based company KNIPEX operates worldwide and has also expanded its social commitment internationally. Under the motto “Education enables sustainable development”, KNIPEX has implemented projects together with personally known partners, associations and foundations, primarily in Africa, but also in South Asia. Their goal: to help improve living and educational conditions.
In 2017, a secondary school was built in Kitamba, Uganda, in cooperation with the Remscheid-based support association “Our children and our future”. The 425 pupils now can complete an apprenticeship in the neighbouring training and further education centre.
In Lolera, a Maasai village in Tanzania, KNIPEX supports the “Q-Ratio” association in setting up a centre for children between the ages of six and 14. Here they are looked after and receive a warm meal every day. In addition, the construction of a rainwater tank next to the children’s centre was financed.
In cooperation with the foundation “Menschen für Menschen” (“People for people”), the construction of a new secondary school in Wogdi, Ethiopia, was made possible in 2022. The school offers space for around 2,000 pupils in the 9th and 10th grades in bright and well-equipped classrooms.
The Wuppertal-based association “Freundeskreis Espace Masolo”, supported by KNIPEX, runs a centre for former street children in Kinshasa, Congo. Here, the children develop artistic and handicraft skills such as playing theatre, making music, metalwork and carpentry. Through these forms of expression, traumatic experiences can be overcome and life goals developed.
Format is live on LinkedIn! Format has been filling professional customers’ toolboxes for 30 years. And now it is time to fill the communication toolbox even further: with FORMAT’s LinkedIn presence.
FORMAT recently launched its own groups on the world’s largest professional network. From now on, there are target-oriented updates, videos, product highlights and services, application examples, trade fair appearances and much more on the own profiles of FORMAT Europe and the country-specific brand accounts Benelux, France, Czech Republic & Slovakia and Austria at regular intervals. More to follow shortly. Networking and exchange of ideas absolutely welcome.
Follow us on LinkedIn!
“At ERIKS, we want to be the best. Not only do we want to offer our customers products at competitive prices, but we also want to deliver them more efficiently, more accurately and faster than the competition,” says Jon Whitehouse, Product Business Unit Director. To achieve this, the British EDE member ERIKS invested 20 million pounds, around 22 million euros, in the new 11 000 square metre Fulfilment Centre of Excellence (FCE) in Oldbury, West Midlands. This replaces the previous ERIKS logistics centre in Halesowen. “For us, it is a very big step on the way to achieving the five customer satisfaction goals at ERIKS,” explains Jon Whitehouse. With 53 per cent more storage capacity than at the old location and 22 per cent more shelf space, the FCE achieves the first goal: to have exactly the products in stock in large numbers to be able to guarantee high availability.
One hundred per cent control
Picking, packing and dispatching orders with one hundred percent accuracy describes the second goal of ERIKS customer satisfaction. As an Industry 4.0 warehouse, the FCE has the technology to make this possible. At each stage of processing within the logistics centre, goods are checked against weight, size and barcodes to ensure that the correct products are delivered. “This happens not just for 99 per cent of orders, but for every single one,” says Jon Whitehouse.
“Our third goal is to deliver as quickly as possible within the UK and Ireland, the fourth to be able to track orders much better,” says Jon Whitehouse. “For both goals, the technology is already in place and is being implemented and optimised.”
The development of digital transformation that supports the customer makes the ERIKS customer satisfaction goals complete. “Extensive warehouse capacity already built now for future requirements, existing infrastructure and scalable Industry 4.0 technology, help to achieve the goals we have set,” says Jon Whitehouse.
In mid-January, Freek Dekkers, Sales Director North Europe-Benelux at EDE International, visited the FCE: “What ERIKS has created with the new logistics centre is very progressive. We have been working together globally and intensively for many years. With the new logistics centre, we will be able to expand our cooperation even further.” Congrats Eriks from EDE International!
At last, FORMATplus marketplace for Slovakia/Czech Republic again!
After the long dry spell since 2019, a marketplace of our FORMATplus Group Slovakia/Czech Republic will finally take place again on 11 May 2023 in Trnava, Slovakia. Around 30 suppliers from the areas of hand tools, precision tools, factory equipment, power tools, personal protective equipment (PPE) and more, as well as 12 members from the FORMATplus country group Slovakia/Czech Republic with more than 150 participants – including selected end customers – have registered and will finally be able to meet again in May for a personal exchange at the “Marktplatz”, a trade fair specially organised by EDE International.
In addition to a social evening with an entertaining evening programme on 10 May, there will be attractive product presentations, sales training and a raffle. EDE will also have its own stand with the trade brands FORMAT, E-COLL, FORTIS PPE and the ETT BASIC dispensers. Vladimira Gimerska, Country Manager Slovakia and Czech Republic, is already full of anticipation: “Despite increasing digitalisation, there is simply no substitute for personal and professional exchange with our members and suppliers!”
EURO STAHL-Handel: Supplier partner AFV Beltrame presents Chalibria to E/D/E Group
Chalibria – that is the name of the new CO₂-neutral steel from the AFV Beltrame Group – number one in Italy and a leader in the European market -. A delegation led by Carlo Beltrame informed numerous steel traders organised in ESH EURO STAHL-Handel in Wuppertal about the new product to support the market launch.
The topic of greenhouse gases has long since reached the executive floors of the steel industry. And so it was an illustrious group that had gathered at the invitation of ESH around authorised signatory Jürgen Laukandt at the E/D/E headquarters. Among the participants were Carlo Beltrame, CEO of the French and Romanian locations and Head of Business Development of the Beltrame Group, the owners of numerous trading houses, E/D/E Managing Director Peter Jüngst, responsible for the steel sector and Annegret Franzen, CEO of EDE International.
Carlo Beltrame and Klaus Rieger, Beltrame Sales Director for the German-speaking countries, emphasised the sales opportunities of Chalibria, because in the future climate neutrality will be a prerequisite in many tenders. Beltrame added that they had worked on the project for two years and had anchored Chalibria as an important element in the Beltrame Group’s wide-ranging decarbonisation strategy.
40 percent CO₂ reduction targeted
So just what is behind Chalibria, a neologism made up of the Latin words chalybs (steel, iron) and libra (balance)? Beltrame measures the CO₂ emissions of all its activities. With 570 kilogrammes of CO₂ per tonne of steel, the company is at a relatively low level compared to the rest of the industry (which is also due to the fact that Beltrame only produces electric steel), which the company wants to reduce by 40 percent by 2030. There are 45 specific individual projects behind this, including the purchase of a hydroelectric power plant or the construction of a steelworks in Romania that generates its own energy needs via a solar park with a capacity of 70 MW.
The production of steel is not yet technologically possible without CO₂ emissions. What Chalibria lacks for neutrality is compensated for by the purchase of greenhouse gas certificates (according to the strict British standard PAS206). A neutral body documents and confirms this process according to DIN EN ISO 14064-1. Dealers and their customers can access the certificate directly after placing an order. “Chalibria is available immediately for all products,” said Klaus Rieger.
“A credible initiative”
The sector is ready, was the impression given in Wuppertal in view of the many interested enquiries. In the end, it depends on the customers, says René Philipp, managing shareholder of E/D/E member company HUSE & PHILIPP, Braunschweig. “I am curious to see how the market accepts it. There will certainly be differences in the different types of business and target groups here. It is a credible initiative by Beltrame and makes sense to want to gain an edge as a market leader in this increasingly important topic. Others will follow behind.”
Peter Jüngst, E/D/E Managing Director Building Services, Steel, Logistics, Construction Equipment, complimented AFV Beltrame: “Sustainability will shape the future. In this respect, we are proud to be able to count such an innovative company among our most important supply partners in the steel sector. Congratulations on this great project!”