With Article 50 triggered the countdown to Britain’s exit from the European Union (EU) has begun in earnest. Speculation and uncertainty appear to be the order of the day. Deal or no deal? Who will dare to follow in our footsteps? Which European laws will we retain and which will fall by the wayside?
UK businesses could be forgiven for feeling overwhelmed and unsettled by our imminent departure from the EU. In reality many are seizing the opportunity presented by the low value of sterling to drive their export strategy. In fact January 2017 was a record breaking month for UK exports – with reported sales of £49,404 million being the highest on record.
Howe Green Ltd has been exporting floor, wall and ceiling access covers, hatches and panels for over three decades. The company’s export success lies in the strength of relationships forged with a network of trusted distributors. With partners in Australia, North and South America, the Far and Middle East, Europe and Scandinavia Howe Green literally has the world covered!
One of the major success stories for Howe Green in the last few months has been the level of exports to Sweden. Sweden is the UK’s biggest export market in the Nordic region. Despite a population of just under 10 million the Swedish construction sector has a turnover of £50 billion and around half of the national wealth is spent in construction and infrastructure.
The sales have been made through Howe Green’s distributor – Elkington AB. Based in Stockholm, Elkington has been supplying a range of access and drainage products to customers in the building services sector for over 50 years. Back in 1999 Elkington realised there was demand for a light weigh access cover that could complement the cast iron manholes covers they were already selling. Following an introduction to Howe Green the two companies have worked closely ever since.
Elkington has built a reputation in Sweden for providing customers with exactly what they need to fulfil their requirements. They believe that this willingness to identify a tailor made solution for an access challenge is what sets them apart from the competition.
Otto von Platen, Managing Director for Elkington explains, “Every day we are talking to consultants in the construction sector who are looking for advice and guidance on specifying products. They are rarely looking for a quick fix. They want a solution that is custom made to meet the specific requirements of their particular project.
The quality of the Howe Green access covers works very well in hospitals and airports – areas with high footfall. A lot of our business is in the healthcare sector. Aesthetics and safety are the top priorities in such busy public environments and we know we can recommend Howe Green access covers with absolute confidence. The level of investment Howe Green has made in CAD software and CNC equipment means that our ‘Swedish specials’ are easily accommodated!”
Howe Green has recently supplied floor access covers for two high profile Swedish projects – the New Karolinska Solna University Hospital (NKS) in Stockholm and the National museum, which is a state backed restoration programme of one of the country’s premier art museums.
January 2017 was a record month for Howe Green exports to Sweden and both companies are committed to build on their continuing success regardless of what happens with Brexit.