UK Volume 21 Superbrands UK Annual Vol.21 Selco Builders Warehouse is the UK’s fastest growing builders merchant . Developing an ever-growing customer base of professional tradespeople in the Repair, Maintenance and Improvement sector, Selco is truly a business on the march Market The UK builders merchant industry, in general, has faced a mixed period over the last two years. While sector performance has largely remained resilient, there have been testing periods as a result of Brexit, unusual weather events affecting the work of tradespeople and, of course, the recent coronavirus outbreak. Selco, however, has been able to continue the strong progression it has seen over the last decade and has established itself as a leading player in the portfolio of businesses of its parent company, Grafton Group. Selco has continually enhanced its position in the market and posted impressive turnover and profit results. This is the result of a combination of bolstering its online and digital offering, continued branch network expansion, as well as a measured and successful reopening programme after lockdown. Product With a customer base comprising professional tradespeople and businesses, Selco’s primary aim is to serve the RMI and home renovation market. As such, each of its branches has in excess of 13,000 recognised trade products available – all at trade prices. From timber to decking and bathrooms to power tools, Selco has an extensive product range, both in branch and through its digital offering. This includes the Click & Deliver and Click & Collect facilities. Additional services available to assist tradespeople with their day-to-day work include sheet-cutting, brick-matching, paint-matching and project lists. Achievements Selco’s rise to prominence has certainly not gone unnoticed in recent years. The company has won back-to-back Builders Merchant of the Year awards and secured its position on the Best Company list for London in Insider Media’s Best Place to Work listings. Recent Developments Innovation and progression have been at the heart of this, the most successful period in Selco’s long and distinguished history. Over the last seven years, its branch network has more than doubled in size and now stands at 69 stores, following the 2020 openings of the Orpington and Salford branches. A significant investment and development in online transactional methods – such as Click & Collect and Click & Deliver – has helped enhance the offering and adjusted the business models to the changing trading habits of Selco’s customers. Over the last 18 months, Selco has broken new ground with innovations to its infrastructure. Its new Lightside Distribution Centre, in partnership with Unipart, serves all branches and provides a 66,000 sq ft headquarters in Oxfordshire to host a greater volume of stock from more than 100 suppliers, ultimately leading to savings for customers. In addition, in 2019 Selco became the first UK builders merchant to open a dedicated customer delivery hub. Based in Edmonton, it serves six London branches, with a team of 36 colleagues aided by 17 HGVs. It is responsible for approximately 1,000 customer deliveries and an estimated 420 inbound deliveries per week. From an HR perspective, Selco is committed to offering exciting career opportunities to all colleagues throughout the business. A £500,000 investment in its Rising Stars programme in 2020, which gives colleagues the chance to progress their careers, is testament to this. Promotion With Selco’s primary target audience being the professional tradesperson, there is a male slant towards its communications strategy. Promotion through channels which attract a largely male audience, such as radio stations including talkSPORT as well as trade websites and publications, ensures Selco’s key messaging is reaching the desired market. Selco sells over 13,000 SKUs frommore than 300 different suppliers DID YOU KNOW?