Keylite Roof Windows Comment: Q3 2021

Jim Blanthorne

The last quarter brought more of the same for roof windows; more demand, more material challenges and more cost increases.

The cost of containers from the Far East shows no sign of normalising.  Perhaps the current rates are the new normal, however we assume competitive forces will return once global supply chains find an equilibrium. Most commentators have given up predicting when this will be, but it won’t be before Chinese New Year.

At our manufacturing and distribution locations, statutory changes and market forces are resulting in wage costs continuing to rise above the rate of inflation.

Timber prices have softened, yet availability remains a challenge on certain specifications. Aluminium and PVC prices are up significantly. All in all, a shortage of good news stories when it comes to supply and cost.

Speaking for Keylite, we have taken every possible measure to shelter customers from price increases, holding the modest increase announced in January 2021 through to year end without passing on any of the exceptional cost inflation.

At the end of September, we duly announced our 2022 price increase, which will take effect 1st January. Again, we have mitigated cost increases as far as possible, keeping the increase for roof windows to single digits.

At Keylite, our strategy throughout 2021 has been to invest in stock and position ourselves to grow the category with the market, resulting in record sales volumes. Demand has come from both existing customers, which we planned for, and an increase in their wallet share due to the supply issues encountered by some competitors, which we hadn’t.  The extraordinary demand we have seen in recent weeks means we will be communicating an allocation system for Q4 to ensure our growing output is apportioned fairly.

We will continue to invest in both stock and manufacturing capacity to support our customers in advance of what we expect to be a strong Q4 and into 2022.

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