In May, Bristol based brick slip cladding specialists Eurobrick celebrated 30 years in business. Clearly the pandemic was at its peak back then so, like many, they put the celebrations on hold. But, as a new sense of normality settled in, they took a little time to reflect. Eurobrick managing director Richard Haines shares their story here.
“Like most businesses we have experienced many challenges over the last 30 years. The original directors, John and Tony started Eurobrick in 1990, and were the first to introduce a fully developed brick slip system to the UK market.
The construction industry, it is fair to say, was quite conservative at the time and reluctant to embrace change; a new brick slip system was often viewed with suspicion. Couple this with the fact that the UK was also in a recession and that made it even harder to generate interest in a new product; people were not buying bricks, never mind brick slips for an unknown system.
As the economy recovered, and with a lot of hard work promoting the benefits of our system, contractors and designers started to pay attention and began to install Eurobrick on their projects. Interest in brick slip cladding systems increased to the extent that other companies thought it was a market worth being in and a host of other systems were developed and brought to market. But we were never deterred by competition.
The original system was what we now call X-Clad, our brick faced external wall insulation system suitable for modular, new build and retrofit projects. But along the way we have responded to customer demand to create new systems to suit different applications. I-Clad was developed especially for interior projects and P-Clad was designed as an external sheathing or rain screen for buildings. Our V-Clad system came about to satisfy a demand for a budget insulation option for the retrofit market. And we continue to work on new products to meet our customer needs.
Our range of brick slips has also grown steadily over the years, and we are now one of the largest stockists in the UK. We have two ranges of brick slips, The Britannia range is an extensive collection of kiln-fired natural clay bricks in a choice of colours and textures that offer a high quality, value for money option. The Classic Range is mostly cut from whole bricks and offers a range of styles from smooth to heavily distressed reclaimed finishes. Along with brick slips we also offer a range of reconstituted stone slips which can be used in our systems too.
We are proud that X, P & I-Clad systems have BBA (British Board of Agrément) certification. Third party certification is only awarded to products following rigorous testing and independent scrutiny, when the certifying body is completely satisfied that the product is fit for its intended use.
Along with the correct certification required by many specifiers during the planning process, we have also invested in making our BIM details available through Bimstore. This allows planners to input BIM details of our P-Clad and X-Clad systems to produce 3D project installation details and in turn to generate the system quantities required for ordering. The technical team at Eurobrick has also grown over the years and they are always on hand to help with any questions.
We have supplied many different sectors including leisure and hospitality, education, commercial, residential and the public sector for a wide range of clients. Our systems can be seen the length and breadth of the country, including for household names such as McDonald’s, Starbucks, Burger King, Top Shop, Warehouse, Premier Inn and O’Neill’s, to name but a few.
Our business has continued to grow year on year and in 2018, a management buyout was completed by myself and the remaining directors following the retirement of the founding directors.
The future seems uncertain for many right now, with Covid-19 still part of our lives and the full impact of Brexit yet to be felt. But we form a strong management team with a clear vision of the future direction of the business. We are developing a new system and will soon be launching an ecommerce facility to allow customers to buy our brick slips online. Here at Eurobrick, there is much to look forward to and we wish to thank all our clients and suppliers for their support over the years.”
You can view a timeline of the first 30 years of Eurobrick here.
For more information on Eurobrick systems and products, please visit www.eurobrick.co.uk.