Partnership is a theme that features prominently in the ethos of board, doors and fittings specialists Hill’s Panel Products (HPP) and its supplier Blum.

HPP, which has its manufacturing and supply headquarters in Oldham and a satellite branch with trade counter in Sheffield, has been trading for more than 30 years and has been a leading supplier of Blum’s high-quality kitchen and furniture fittings, drawers and accessories for most of that time.

Blum, which has operations worldwide and delivers to more than 120 markets, has previously welcomed an HPP delegation to its HQ in Austria, and has recently hosted two HPP directors – Dan Mounsey, Marketing and Business Development, and Gareth Evans, Sales – at its UK base to share its ‘Moving Ideas’ corporate vision and messaging for the future.

“It was evident there are a lot of synergies between Blum and ourselves,” says Dan Mounsey. “We are both family-owned; we share similar attitudes towards business, innovation, service, quality, continuous improvement and trust, as well as how we treat and value our people, and our attitudes towards sustainability.”

Blum’s ‘Moving Ideas’ message presented to Dan and Gareth is designed to appeal to the emotions that motivate consumers. It is based on seven pillars:

  • Inspiration – pushing boundaries and moving ideas forward
  • Innovation – improving what’s good today to be better tomorrow
  • Quality of living – connecting products with real life use
  • Services – ensuring they keep pace with the ever-changing world
  • Quality – continuous improvement in every aspect of the business
  • Product range – product diversity that reflects current and future design trends
  • Trust – providing substance to the Blum brand and what it aims to achieve

Dan adds: “Blum is a very impressive business with a multi-billion-euro turnover. It’s a brand that in many ways sells itself such is the quality and practicality of its products. 

“Moving Ideas is their key messaging that they want to get across over the coming months and years, and an important part of that will be via HPP through our partnership with them.”

Both firms enjoy good staff retention records and recognise the value of apprenticeships and training to nurture talent. They also share strong sustainability credentials. Blum’s impressive environmental and energy policy features resource and energy management measures that include heat recovery systems, building insulation, intelligent heating control systems, ground water cooling and energy efficient lighting systems.

It also makes a substantial number of deliveries by rail and utilises reusable cardboard packaging and an environmentally-friendly packaging system called ECO-Pack that was specially developed by Blum.

HPP, meanwhile, is taking account of sustainability in everything it does from its vehicles, its processes and packaging to its day-to-day operations.

Dan says: “We are certified as a zero land fill operator. We recycle as much as we can, and use our wood waste in biomass boilers to heat various buildings and facilitate some production processes, we also have multiple solar panel installations.

“We have moved from polystyrene corner protectors on our doors and worktops to pulp-based protectors and all of our deliveries are now paperless.”

HPP is also working with its MFC suppliers to highlight that chipboard is a carbon positive material that stores more carbon than it releases, and that it can be recycled again after its 10-20 year lifecycle.