VILLAMOURA: The Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) has announced that the theme for the All Industry Conference 2013 is 'Fit for the Future' and confirmed the first speakers.

The BMF has secured industry statesman, Peter Hindle MBE, head of Saint-Gobain in the UK, Ireland and South Africa, as one of the headline speakers at the event next June, alongside David Kilburn, executive chairman of MKM Building Supplies, and Andy Williamson, group managing director designate of IKO.

Four key industry speakers will address audiences on the Saturday morning, each representing one of the four pillars of the BMF: multiple, large independent, small to medium merchants, and suppliers for what promises to be a thought provoking morning. Delegates will then be invited to participate in an interactive Q&A session with the speakers.

Said John Newcomb, BMF MD: “Peter Hindle and David Kilburn rarely speak at industry conferences, so this is a real coup, and I’m sure everyone will want to hear how their businesses are addressing issues in today’s market.

“The economic signs that we are slowly coming out of recession sets the theme of the Conference. More businesses fail coming out of recession than during a downturn. We want to make sure that the merchant industry is Fit for the Future, and companies are planning for the upturn and preparing to make the most of the growth opportunities it brings.

“We are delighted to secure three respected speakers for the industry session and will be adding a fourth speaker representing the small and medium sized independent merchant in the near future. They will all have plenty to contribute. Peter’s career spans four decades and encompasses the independent, the growing national, and now the global merchant, which gives him a unique vantage point. David has overseen the growth of MKM from a business start up in 1995 to the UK’s largest independently owned builder’s merchant’s chain today - a business that has been voted Best Independent Merchant for five out of the last seven years. Andy is not only one of the most experienced supply-side managers in the business, but is also a passionate supporter of the merchanting industry and one of its foremost networkers.

“We said at the outset that we wanted to make this Conference relevant to every sector of the merchanting and supply industry. The announcement of our first three speakers demonstrates our intent to make this the Conference that no-one should miss and the best the Industry has ever seen.”