We are celebrating our 50th anniversary year with the consolidation of several of our businesses to form Boardlink, as well as major financial investment.

So why choose to consolidate?
Over the last ten years we have actively merged our operational and management activities. With the additional recent reinvestment of £4.5 million into the business to purchase our previously-rented manufacturing facility, it was the right time to merge the remaining businesses and trade as one company to the market place.

Businesses choose to consolidate for many reasons:

To reduce operational and capital costs and improve the bottom line. To increase revenue – bringing companies together to create a sufficient size can expand opportunities within a sector and on an international scale. To become an industry leader – with greater size comes greater purchasing power and sales opportunities. To increase economies of scale – eliminating the duplication of assets and allowing for oftentimes, considerable financial savings, as well as allowing a business to operate far more efficiently.

For us, our consolidation not only makes our branding clearer, stronger and more succinct, it also enables Boardlink to provide greater clarity on the products and services that we offer to our industry, specifically carton board mills, printers, ready meal manufacturers and retailer’s.

In addition to this, general practice such as internal accounting efficiencies and a single market facing company meant that a consolidation will help us combat rising costs driven by the ‘living wage’, raw materials and oil increases, ensuring that our offering remains competitive within the market place. Ultimately, less administration allows us to focus our resource on performance data and business improvement, both of which are vital in moving the business forward in the best possible way.

Trading as one large company also provides greater credit security to our suppliers, as well as on the flipside creating a market presence that will allow us access to wider funding, should we ever need it. This larger market presence also adds additional weight in the form of giving current and potential customers confidence in the products that we are producing, specifically within markets that we are developing, such as luxury carton boards and ready meal trays.

There needs to be a good reason for changing a company name as it can be an expensive piece of verbal real estate. It was difficult decision to drop the industry recognised names of Deva Hawarden, but following research it was clear Deva Hawarden Board and Display was a bit longwinded. However, a fundamental issue for us prior to consolidation was the pronunciation of one of the company names ‘Harwarden Sheeters’ (pronounced Har-den), the area where our business is based. The same was true of our use of ‘Deva’ – the Roman name for our nearest city Chester, and not a celebrity tantrum.

Therefore, not only can a geographically referenced names be restrictive when doing business on a national scale, but this particular one has confused customers for many years. As a business to business manufacturer and service provider, offering a link between global carton board mills and the UK printers/box makers Boardlink, our group name, seemed to best fit all our activities when brought under one company.

Working with one company is infinitely simpler than working with multiple. Alan Mulally, the man behind the internal consolidation and streamlining of the Ford Motor Co. in recent years, is recorded as commenting “we’re going to merge with ourselves”. In essence this is exactly what we have done. We are still the same products, people and services as before, though now we are one business with greater clarity on our future.

Overall this strategic move increases opportunities for the business moving forward. With everything already in place and the consolidation complete ahead of our 2018 deadline, we have an exciting year ahead with plans well beyond 2017.