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Solidor wins G-15 Promotional Campaign of the Year - Retail

Solidor, part of DW3 Products Group, won the G-15 Award for Promotional Campaign of the Year – Retail at the prestigious ceremony held in London on the 27th November.

Solidor’s consumer campaign generated a record number of homeowner leads for its trade customers. It included app development, SEO, PPC activity, development of the online ‘Design a Door’ facility, an active social media campaign and presence at Grand Designs LIVE.

Homeowners now ask for Solidor by name thanks to an engaging consumer brand and website.

Solidor CEO Gareth Mobley says: “Our consumer campaign is a great success. We’re getting more consumer leads than ever, and we pass them immediately to our customers.

“Winning the G-15 is a great testament to the team,” adds Gareth. “The fast growth in quality leads we’re generating is helping Solidor retailers grow, but getting recognition for it at the G-Awards is something else entirely. Congratulations to everyone involved.”




DW3 CEO claims EY national award

Gareth Mobley, the CEO of manufacturing investment vehicle DW3 Products Group, has been recognised for his success over the last 12 months, being named as a national winner at the EY Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.

This is the latest in a string of awards for Gareth, who also claimed the crown of EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year for Manufacturing in the North of England earlier this year. The firm was also victorious at the 2015 Rainmakers Awards, securing the Small-cap Deal of the Year category for the investment in composite door manufacturer Solidor by NorthEdge Capital.

The chief executive of Stoke-on-Trent-based DW3 was praised for his ‘determination to be both disruptive and innovative. As well as supporting local charities and being a strong advocate for UK manufacturing, the judges recognised his ‘well-articulated, long-term strategy for growth.’

Formed in October 2014 following the acquisition of portfolio company Solidor by NorthEdge, DW3 Products Group has quickly established itself as one of the leading investors in the home improvement sector.

The business has made four acquisitions since its inception, adding window and glazing firms Eclectic Systems and Window Widgets to its existing portfolio of Solidor and door manufacturer Nice Door Panels in April this year.

Gareth Mobley, CEO of DW3 Products Group, said: “It has been an extremely busy year, from the investment by NorthEdge to DW3’s development as an investment vehicle and expansion as a group. This award is a fantastic achievement, and is testament to the skill and hard work of everyone at the business.

“We are committed to manufacturing innovative products to the highest quality, and remain on the lookout for brands that share our vision for the industry. It’s an exciting time for the business at present, and we’re targeting a three times increase on turnover to £70m in the next three years.”



The Manufacturer article

Gareth Mobley, CEO at DW3 Products Group and composite door manufacturer Solidor, discusses the appetite for investment in manufacturing companies, and the growth potential of the sector in the coming years.

British manufacturing is widely acknowledged as among the most high quality in the world, with companies finding considerable appetite from across the globe for their products, and many running successful export businesses. However, it’s also true that the UK plays host to some of the most innovative manufacturers, constantly pushing the boundaries and challenging the status quo.

Having a background in the fenestration industry, I have witnessed this first hand. As CEO of composite door manufacturer Solidor, our sole purpose was to provide an alternative to the boring front doors we had become accustomed to, utilising new technologies and designs. With innovation comes interest from investors, and last November, we entered a partnership with private equity firm NorthEdge Capital. As part of the deal, DW3 Products Group was formed, an investment vehicle designed to provide investment and support to innovative businesses within the fenestration industry.

This is part of a wider trend currently sweeping the sector. In a recent survey by Deloitte, 77 per cent of manufacturing companies said that they continue to look for acquisitions, with 60 per cent expecting further activity in the next 12 months. With confidence in the economy currently on the rise, businesses are looking to access capital and maximise growth, either through acquisitions or investment.

In particular, the British manufacturing sector is becoming increasingly attractive to investors. HL Plastics, the UK’s fastest growing vinyl profile extruder, was acquired by building products manufacturer Quanex for $145m in June 2015, while Masonite made the double acquisition of door manufacturers Performance Doorset Solutions and Door Stop to bolster its offering.

With the return of the public markets, we have also seen an increasing number of manufacturers listing on the stock exchange, beginning with the £78m IPO of Safestyle UK in December 2013. We’ve also seen listings for manufacturers including Eurocell, Epwin and Entu, further underlining the appetite for businesses in the sector.

Having had experience of investment from both the business owners’ and investors’ perspectives, it has become clear that both sides are now actively seeking opportunities to partner with. However, in order to attract the attention of backers, companies need to ensure they can offer something original, making innovation in manufacturing all the more important.

Here, it is worth noting that the fenestration industry has been highly successful, with many of the high profile deals of the past couple of years coming from innovative businesses within the sector. As a result, companies like Safestyle and Performance Doorset Solutions have gone for a premium, as investors recognise the potential for future growth. In a marketplace revolving around such small items, product development is essential to ensure continued sales, and inevitably attracts interest from investors.

With this in mind, there are many manufacturing companies that require a change of mindset when looking to unlock growth through accessing finance. While playing it safe with a tried and trusted business model may deliver slow but continuous growth, investors are now looking to back companies with a new and exciting approach.

When looking for an investment, business owners must also ensure that they pick a management team that not only understands the business, but has the same strategic aims for the future. Many private equity firms say that they invest in management teams, but it is equally important for the management team to understand their investors, and realise what value they will add.

The manufacturing sector has been one of the UK’s economic strongholds for decades, and businesses must continue to reinvent themselves if they want to attract investment, and solidify the sector’s future.


Further investment for DW3 portfolio

DW3 Products Group, the vehicle that specialises in investing in innovative manufacturing businesses, has provided an additional £2m in funding to Window Widgets and Solidor to help scale up production capabilities.

The new funding has been split evenly across new plant and machinery and the development of new and original product lines.

Window Widgets was founded in 2004, and has become the first port of call for key components for the fenestration sector, while Solidor is best known for its original door designs.

In addition to this, DW3 has also invested heavily in new premises, with new 28,000 sq. ft. sites opened in Gloucester and Stoke. As a result, the firm expects to bolster its staff, adding a further 50 staff across the two sites and pushing its total headcount above 250.

This follows a strong first half to 2015 for Window Widgets, having integrated into DW3’s portfolio to extend the group’s geographical reach and distribution capabilities.

Gareth Mobley, CEO of DW3 Products Group, said: “We are proud to be a firm supporter of innovative British manufacturing businesses, and recognise that continual investment and nurturing is required to ensure they reach their potential.

“Our latest round of funding will enable the business to continue to challenge our own offering, thereby promising the most innovative and efficient products to our clients. It’s an extremely exciting time at present, and I’m looking forward to further extending our production capabilities and providing additional local employment opportunities.”



DW3 portfolio has a winning start

Gareth Mobley, CEO of both investment vehicle DW3 Products Group and composite door manufacturer Solidor, has been recognised for his contribution to the manufacturing sector, winning the Manufacturing category at the EY Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.

Mobley was praised by the judges for the way the company has ‘innovated its products and how they are produced’, as well as his ability to ‘raise significant finance from investors along with the way’ to support the company’s growth. Mobley has taken Solidor from strength to strength over the last 12 months, and was instrumental in securing investment from NorthEdge in November 2014.

Last year, the Stoke-on-Trent-based entrepreneur claimed the North West Young Entrepreneur of the Year title, underlining Mobley’s consistent levels of high performance.

In addition, the investment in DW3 portfolio company Solidor by NorthEdge Capital secured the award for Small Cap Deal of the Year at’s Rainmaker Awards 2015.

Gareth Mobley, CEO of DW3 Products Group, said: “2014 was an excellent year for both me and Solidor, and I am delighted to see our efforts rewarded. Having built the business from a start-up, with the central theme of disrupting and innovating what was previously a stagnant sector, we are now entering an exciting time in the company’s development under DW3.

“DW3 offers businesses more than just investment. Solidor, along with our other portfolio companies, have access to expertise of the highest calibre across both manufacturing and financial services. Our management team is among the strongest in the UK, and I am extremely ambitious for the remainder of the year.”




DW3 Growth plans

DW3 Products Group (DW3), the investment vehicle that exclusively targets the manufacturing and fenestration industries, is targeting rapid growth over the next three years, projecting turnover of more than £70m by 2018.

Formed in October 2014, the group has quickly established itself as one of the leading investors in the home improvement sector, following its acquisition of four businesses in the last six months.

Headquartered in Stoke-on-Trent, DW3 added window and glazing firms Eclectic Systems and Window Widgets to its portfolio in April this year. This complemented its existing portfolio of door manufacturers Solidor and Nice Door Panels. Each business shares similar distribution channels, which enhances the group’s geographical reach and distribution capabilities.

DW3 currently employs 205 staff and achieved a turnover of £28m last year across its portfolio. NorthEdge Capital backed the business in November 2014 to allow the firm to expand its senior team and continue investing in its operations capacity and IT systems.

Headed up by CEO Gareth Mobley, the management team is notably strong. The Board, headed by Stuart Lees as Chairman, CFO Chris Chapman and Group Operations Director Mike Price has considerable experience in both the financial and manufacturing sectors.

Gareth Mobley, CEO of DW3 Products Group, said: “In an age when style is key, I wanted to set up a vehicle to support businesses capable of producing innovative products to transform the look of your home. Having experience of the difficulties that come with bringing a manufacturing company into the market, we have a management team with much to offer aspiring entrepreneurs in the sector.

“DW3 is an exciting new investment group with a portfolio of products which are already showing extremely positive growth signs. With plans to make further acquisitions in the home improvement market in the coming months, we’re confident of surpassing our £70m target in the next three years.”

Jon Pickering, Director at NorthEdge Capital and Director of DW3 Products Group, said: “We are fully supportive of Gareth and the team in supporting the group in continuing to grow both organically and through strategic bolt-on acquisitions. We have ensured that the requisite acquisition funding is available to enable the team’s strategic vision to be met.  We want to continue to support Northern based entrepreneurs in realising their ambitions.”





Newly formed investment vehicle, DW3 Products Group, is delighted to announce that it has now acquired highly regarded industry innovators Window Widgets and Eclectic Systems from Dan Gill.

Window Widgets was founded in 2004 and has become the first port of call for key components for the window, door and conservatory sectors; while Eclectic Systems is best known for developing the fast-growing, revolutionary Residence 9 window system.

The acquisitions bring the total number of companies within the DW3 Products Group to four, with the new additions sitting alongside Solidor and Nice Door Panels. Each business shares similar distribution channels, thereby enhancing the Groups’ geographical reach and distribution capabilities.

At a time when building products are manufactured overseas and shipped into the UK, DW3 is proud to be a firm supporter of innovative British manufacturing businesses, which are providing home grown employment opportunities.

Gareth Mobley, CEO of DW3 Products Group, commented: “This is fantastic news and an incredibly exciting investment for us. Under Dan’s stewardship, R9 has grown exponentially over the last three years and Window Widgets has become hugely important as an industry favourite for fabricators from all corners of the U.K and Ireland. Dan has an exceptional talent for developing truly game-changing products. The combination of our know-how and shared passion to re-define the industry we know so well, creates significant potential for the Group.”

With immediate effect, Dan Gill will take up the role of CEO of the DW3 Group Window Division and sit on the main DW3 Board. Dan commented: “This is an incredibly exciting investment for us and one that has considerable scope for development. It means that we can fast track some new product launches and blossom into a fully-fledged systems house as we build the wider group through organic growth and acquisition. I am really looking forward to joining the board of DW3 and to working alongside Gareth and the great team that’s been assembled.”

Gareth commented: “The introduction of Dan as the CEO for the Window Division will provide us with prodigious expertise in terms of product design and engineering. This investment will have a transformational effect on the group and we hope, on the wider industry. We have a lot up our sleeves, so installers and fabricators can look forward to more revolutionary products in the near future.”

DW3 Products Group, with the backing of NorthEdge Capital, has firm plans in place for additional investments during the course of 2015, and beyond. The Group has quickly established itself as one of the most exciting in the home improvement sector, and with four acquisitions in four months, the benchmark has been set.





Yet again, Solidor stole the show when it came to The Sentinel Business Awards, with them winning Business of the Year for the second year running, while CEO Gareth Mobley was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year for the third year in succession.

More than 400 individuals from North Staffordshire and South Cheshire's most prominent businesses were in attendance at the event, which was held on 24th March, 2015 at the King's Hall in Stoke-On-Trent. Now in its 19th year, The annual Sentinel Business Awards celebrate the region's best business achievements rewarding growth, innovation and development in the local economy, something which Solidor has achieved and embraced in abundance for a number of years.

Their innovative approach to product design and marketing also looks set to continue under the stewardship of managing director, Joe Martoccia and the new management team, with exciting new product development and marketing plans ready to be launched in April. The Composite door market is currently one of the most exciting and dynamic of the home improvement sector, with a broad range of installation companies and specialised distributors helping to drive growth.

Joe Martoccia, managing director of Solidor commented: ‘I’m absolutely thrilled for Gareth and for everyone associated with Solidor, these awards are for them. Winning back to back awards against some excellent local companies is an incredible achievement, businesses from this region really demonstrate some of the best manufacturing and commercial principles I have experienced."

Gareth Mobley, CEO of Solidor and DW3 Products Group concluded: ‘I’m still humbled by the recognition that the team at Solidor and I have received over the years. It’s been very much a team success and one in which I believe will achieve further recognition in the years to come.’





DW3 Products Group has expanded its board of commercially minded and experienced directors with the appointment of Mike Price as group operations director. He brings with him considerable expertise in lean operational excellence, along with a number of awards and is a former chief executive of Ultraframe.

The credentials of Mike Price are impressive as he’s a highly regarded expert in operational improvement and change management, while his appointment is a real coup for DW3 Products Group. This reflects their lofty ambitions as a dynamic group, which is set to change the perception of the fenestration industries in the UK.

His past roles also include his own Operational Excellence business and as the managing director of The Manufacturing Institute, while accolades at Ultraframe include Best Engineering Plant 2007 and Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence Bronze Medallion in 2009, which was the first award of it’s kind at the time in Europe. More recently as managing director of Operational Excellence Ltd, he’s undertaken a number of consultancy projects and training and educational programmes in several industry sectors, including private equity pre-deal due diligence, post deal value creation and business integration strategies.

Mike Price, newly appointed group operations director of DW3 Products Group commented: ‘I’m delighted to be joining Gareth and fellow directors in the DW3 Products Group and it’s a sector I know well and enjoy. We’ve got bold ambitions as a group and I’m relishing the opportunity to play my part in implementing operational excellence across all of our investments.’

Gareth Mobley, CEO of DW3 Products Group concludes: ‘The strategic appointment of Mike will provide us with true world-class operational expertise for our respective investments. This is an integral part of our plan to invest in companies that can demonstrate true innovation and potential for further growth.’

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Solidor Group has received a significant investment from DW3 Products Group

Solidor Group has received a significant investment from DW3 Products Group, which has just been set up with the financial backing of private equity firm NorthEdge Capital, to form a new and dynamic group of businesses that’s set to change our perception of the fenestration industry in the UK.

This strategic investment for a significant shareholding in composite door pioneer, Solidor Group, will allow the business to accelerate its growth plan, expand its senior management team and to continue investing in operations, capacity and IT. It will also provide a firm platform, support and commercial resources for a buy and build strategy to create a truly innovative group.

Over the last five years Solidor has matured into the fastest growing company in the composite door sector as it challenges for market leadership. With the industry’s best and award-winning marketing campaigns, they have continued to demonstrate an aggressive product development programme for their solid hardwood core doors that’s spurned a number of industry firsts, a colour range that extends to 17 finishes inside and out and a range of exclusive hardware options, not to mention a number of awards and accolades.

DW3 Products Group is being headed up by CEO Gareth Mobley, also the current managing director of Solidor Group and supporting him is an experienced board of commercially minded directors. They include the incoming chairman Stuart Lees, who has considerable expertise in corporate finance, growth and acquisition strategies both inside and outside the industry with Epwin Group, Everest and Ultraframe.

This dynamic new group will be making further investments in the coming months, which they believe will help them realise their ambition to become one of the most successful and exciting company groups in the home improvement sector. In the coming months DW3 Products Group already have firm plans for acquisitions of businesses with similar qualities to Solidor, which will help re-define the structure of the glazing industry.

Gareth Mobley, CEO of DW3 Products Group commented: ‘This is great news for everybody at Solidor and for our industry as a whole, that external investors can now see real opportunity in our sector once again. This will allow us to accelerate our growth plan at Solidor and we've got big ambitions for the future and a number of further product developments to launch.

He continues: ‘I will still remain actively involved in Solidor, though we will be supplementing the business with a number of key appointments in the immediate future, while our established management team continue to run the business on a day to day basis.’


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