Fasteners supplier expands services

Louise Davis

A key driver behind TFC's plans for growth has been the recognition and need to develop and expand its growth opportunities through new and organic business that will contribute to the company's overall vision. The company was aware that many of its long-term customers recognised it as a reliable and technically competent fasteners supplier but were not aware of the broader range of services being offered since extensive expansion plans were put in place back in 2007. These plans have moved the company from a two-centre £7 million business to an eight-centre pan-European £21 million business employing over 100 staff.

A recent example of the firm's organic growth success has been the introduction of a customer tailored DLF operation with one of the UK's leading ball valve manufactures that was looking to significantly improve upon the system already in place. Steve Teale at TFC recalls; “We had an excellent relationship through the long-term supply of a range of Smalley Spirolox rings and circlips. We identified an opportunity to further grow this relationship with cross-selling of other fastener products and services, specifically with our flexible Direct Line Feed solutions as the customer expressed concerns on their current service levels with their existing supplier.

TFCs commercial team offered a competitively priced package that allowed our logistics team to carry out a routine site survey and to analyse the customer’s current set-up. We soon identified signs of sub-standard service, double bin stock outs, untidy racking, poor labelling and we were advised of on-going price increases that were affecting their production schedules and ultimately, the reputation of this manufacturer with their customers.”

After completion of the site survey, the firm's logistical team was able to offer an improved stock management system. The new racking was introduced at TFC's investment, complete with new stock bins and clear 2D bar-code labelling that allowed the customer to track and reduce consumption and overheads.

Furthermore, through utilising TFC’s experience and technical knowledge base, the company introduced cost reduction initiatives by working with its customer's engineering department to approve alternative products that would enable cost reductions and to rationalise their stock profile.

As a result the company has increased sales ten-fold to a turnover in excess of £100,000 and established a much broader footing with its customer, and subsequently identified additional product sales opportunities to enable it to grow its business in the future.

“The TFC teams did a great job on this and many other projects where we have assisted the customer to achieve their production efficiency targets. We look forward to working with many more new and existing customers to help make improvements to their businesses,” says Teale.

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