'Supergroup' created for independent merchants

Published:  04 December, 2013

NMBS and Unimer have announced their intention to create a 'supergroup' for independent merchants.

Expected to come into effect on 1 February 2014, the combined businesses have a turnover in excess of £1bn and more than 1,000 members and 600 suppliers.

As part of the arrangements, Unimer independent merchant members will be offered membership of NMBS by way of immediate or deferred terms.

NMBS chairman Tim Allen said: "NMBS is delighted by this agreement which represents a quantum leap forward for the independent builders' merchant sector. Undoubtedly it will deliver hitherto unseen scale to all stakeholders and it will provide our members with the advantage they need to compete more effectively with their national rivals on a daily basis."

Unimer chairman Leo Martin said: "This transaction will enable substantial cost savings to be made within the existing supply chain to enhance the competitive position of both merchants and their suppliers. We are delighted that the NMBS board has worked with us to ensure that this vision has become a reality and the directors of both companies will now work together to advance the interests of the independent merchant."

Unimer managing director Howard Grant has stated his intention to retire from full time business, but will remain to oversee the efficient wind down of the existing Unimer operation.

Chris Hayward, managing director of NMBS commented: "Together NMBS and Unimer will become a powerhouse for selling into and dealing with the independent merchant sector. It will provide significant additional resources that can be deployed to create real added value for both our members and suppliers."

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