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Building Distribution

Saint-Gobain Distribution Bâtiment is Europe’s leading distribution network of building materials. It supplies the new-building, renovation and home improvement markets.

Photos of some store chains: Jewson, Dahl, Point P, Raab Karcher, Lapeyre

With a network of around 4,400 sales outlets run by 64,000 employees, Saint-Gobain Distribution Bâtiment has a presence in 27 countries. N°1 European distributor of building materials, the company supplies the new-building, renovation and home improvement markets.
The Building Distribution Sector targets craftsmen, small and medium-sized enterprises, private project owners and large companies via a network of strong and complementary trading brands, either generalist or specialist. Rooted in its local market, each brand has a unique position to meet the specific needs of each type of customer and market. Together, they contribute to the Sector's overall sales effectiveness. The Sector deploys best practices in all its host countries, while maintaining a high level of responsiveness to the local market. This nimble, proactive organization makes it possible to meet a wide range of expectations in terms of products and services.
Our ambition is to be THE Reference of the building trade for both our customers and our suppliers. In order to achieve this, we rely on quality, drive, and expertise of our teams.
Our priorities are those of a leader. We aim to provide our customers with the best service and highest added value by offering them the most effective solutions, adapted to each market, for example energy efficiency in new or renovated buildings. We are also looking to strengthen our core business, building a solid infrastructure in terms of IT, supply chain and multi-channel systems, designed to optimize relationships with our partner suppliers and our customers. Finally, we place considerable emphasis on team development.

Buy well to sell well

The volume procured by the Building Distribution Sector represents 45% of total Group procurement. This is a key leverage to boost commercial drive, win market share and improve the Sector's profitability.
For this reason, purchasing is a crucial discipline. Accordingly, the Building Distribution Sector set up the Purchasing Excellence Program in 2013. This training course is designed to train purchasers on responsible procurement.

Brands and People who make the difference

Point.P Matériaux de Construction, multi-specialist brand is the leading distributor on the French market. Other specialist brands work alongside it, forming the network of Saint-Gobain Distribution Bâtiment in France. They mainly target building professionals. Together, they constitute a network covering the whole of the country and serving the new building and renovation markets and providing a complete range of solutions for energy performance.

Lapeyre, main brand of the Lapeyre group is specialised in home improvement through its different areas: fittings, bathroom, kitchen, joinery and flooring. As both manufacturer and distributor, the Lapeyre Group offers a complete range of products and tailored services (e.g. home installation) for the new building and renovation markets.

In the United Kingdom, Jewson is a leading supplier of building materials and sustainable timber. The Saint-Gobain Building Distribution network in the UK & Ireland targets mainly small and medium sized enterprises, as well as trades people, and is made up of a portfolio of generalist and specialist brands serving the new build and renovation markets.

Saint-Gobain Building Distribution Deutschland GmbH is the leading generalist distributor of building materials in Germany. The network is made up of a complementary range of generalist and specialist brands designed to meet the needs of all types of customers, markets and projects. Its main generalist brand, Raab Karcher, also operates in the Netherlands, Poland, Hungary and Czech Republic.

The main brands in the Nordic countries are Dahl, leading distributor of plumbing-heating-sanitary products, and Optimera, a major distributor of building materials. Both serve the new building, renovation and sustainable solutions markets and industrial markets.

Innovation and value-added customer care

The value-added service brought day in and day out by the women and men of the Building Distribution Sector mainly stems from innovation.

A complete and comprehensive response
The Building Distribution Sector's brands move with the times: they adapt to developments in markets and technologies by proposing new distribution formats and innovative tools. A few examples:
- the Plateforme du Bâtiment has developed its "drive" service, enabling customers to order materials on line and then collect them within an hour, in the warehouse of their choice.
- Lapeyre has launched a new store. The new generation of Lapeyre stores now propose two separate purchasing routes: "counter side" for customers who know what they want and are looking for speed and efficiency, and "project side" for customers after calm advice from the brand's experts. These new stores also have a "drive", allowing customers to finalize and take away their web orders.

One constant concern: customer satisfaction
The Building Distribution Sector's brands implement tools and services to ensure customer satisfaction with craftsmen and consumers.
- In the UK, Jewson initiated a partnership with the quick delivery business Shutl, in order to create an express delivery service for 48 of its London companies.
- In France, Lapeyre is the first national brand to publish the service quality of each of its stores daily. Customers in this way have the possibility of giving one or several satisfaction ratings (showroom, quality of advice, advisors' availability, cash-till waiting time...).

Promote energy efficiency and new forms of energy
To guide and support their customers in the challenging field of energy efficiency, the Building Distribution Sector's brands develop innovative tools and propose training programs specifically tailored to sustainable products and solutions.
- In France, Point.P Matériaux de Construction has set up specifically dedicated energy efficiency counters in 80 branches. The energy efficiency counters are equipped with an original and complete structure: in addition to the dedicated and specially trained sales staff, the expert energy efficiency branches provide customers with an exclusive tool, a simulator unparalleled in France to measure the energy efficiency of their future construction projects.
- In the UK, Jewson has worked on implementing a unique green energy sourcing initiative with its partner Biffa, the waste management specialists. Jewson's objective is to reach "zero landfilled waste".
- To guide and support their customers in the field of sustainable building in the UK, Building Distribution's brands Jewson, Graham, Gibbs & Dandy and Minster joined forces to create the Greenworks Training Academy which provides access to advanced learning on high performance energy products. Inspired by this model, Raab Karcher opened its own Greenworks Academy in Breda in the Netherlands.
- In Northern Europe, Dahl continued rolling out its innovative Klimacenter concept. Klimacenters serve at the same time as showrooms, training centers and centers of excellence dedicated to renewable energies and ventilation.

E-business and digital presence
The Sector's brands are continuing to develop in the e-business world. In addition to the smartphone apps proposed by Graham, Jewson, Point.P and Raab Karcher, a large number of commercial websites and applications have been successfully launched.
All in all, the Sector recorded sales of just over €400million by e-transaction and the internet in 2013.

New generation product catalogues
For the Building Distribution brands, the product catalogue is an essential tool. It is a means to present in a reliable, exhaustive and targeted way the range of products and services and facilitate the daily work of professional customers. Always at the leading edge of innovation, the brands have launched new generation catalogues.

Building Distribution trading brands include:

In France In the United Kingdom
Point.P Matériaux de construction
La Plateforme du Bâtiment
PUM Plastiques
Point.P Travaux Publics
K par K
Menuiseries Françaises
Gibbs and Dandy
Minster Roofing and Roofline
Ceramic Tile Distributors
International Decorative
International Timber
Ideal Bathrooms
George Boyd
Neville Lumb
Calders & Grandidge
In Germany In the Nordics
Raab Karcher
Plattform Handwerker-Fachmarkt
Balzer Group
Fliesen Discount Keramundo
Platten Peter
Schulte Tiefbauhandel

Key figures

- Around 4,400 sales outlets
- Presence in 27 countries
- 64,000 employees

Figures at end 2013