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Builders merchant buying group restructures

Independent builders merchant buying group Combined Buying Association (CBA) is to divide into two distinct and dedicated groups.

From January 2013, the CBA will operate in its key markets of building products, timber, kitchens & Bathrooms while a new Plumbing and Heating Group (PHG) will service the specialist plumbing, heating & sanitaryware market.

The move is designed to enable all members to continue to enhance their businesses with the advantages of collaboration and coordinated purchasing within each group, driving access to markets for suppliers.

Cooper Callas, distributor of bathroom and kitchen products, will leave the CBA at the end of 2012 and will not be joining the new PHG.

Stuart Mason Elliott, chairman of the CBA said: “The challenges of the building products and timber markets and the plumbing and heating sector are different and, with the new structure of two buying groups, operating independently from each other, the needs of suppliers will be well served.”

The new PHG will comprise Beggs, Crosslings, Farr & Harris, Hargreaves Ltd, HPS, Pochins, and Willbonds.

Mixed merchants RGB, Ridgeons and Tippers will operate across both groups.

Pochins’ managing director David Pochin, chairman of the PHG said: “The plumbing and heating market presents specific demands and the new group will be unique in working exclusively in the sector to meet those challenges. The PHG is looking forward to working very closely with suppliers to deliver mutual competitive advantage.”

Both buying groups are set to grow significantly in the coming months and six new branches, previously Build Centres, have been acquired by CBA members from Saint-Gobain & PHG have plans to increase their network with nine new branches this year.

Business will continue as usual for all existing CBA members and suppliers between now and the end of 2012.

About Fiona Russell-Horne

Group Managing Editor across the BMJ portfolio.

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