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Five reasons why becoming a member
can help you and your business

  • Training and development
  • Business support
  • Access to market data
  • Networking opportunities
  • Political representation

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BMF training

The BMF runs a wide range of training and skills development for employees of merchants, distributors and suppliers, from yard staff to company directors. Training ranges from online product knowledge to specialist skills training.

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BMF Handbook and Directory 2017

BMF publications include One Voice magazine, Builders Merchant Building Index (BMBI), Plumbing & Heating News, Timber Forum News, Remuneration survey, KPI report, Business News and CPA Weekly notes.

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Featured Events

The BMF has a wide range of events, forums and regional meetings to enhance networking opportunities.

BMF Branch Managers' Forum
27-28 June 2017

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BMF Mastermerchant, Ambleside
14-16 July 2017
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BMF All-Industry Conference

15-18 June 2017

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Latest News

Here are the latest news stories from the BMF

BMF MD shortlisted for Director of the Year Award  

Institute of DirectorsJohn Newcomb, MD of the Builders Merchants Federation, is one of the top business leaders in the West Midlands shortlisted in the prestigious IoD Director of the Year Awards.  The annual awards ceremony, held by the regional branch of the Institute of Directors, recognises the achievements of business leaders across the West Midlands where the BMF’s headquarters is based. Regional winners then go on to represent the West Midlands in the National Awards in October.  

Calum Nisbet, IoD West Midlands Regional Director said: “The IoD Awards are public recognition of the key role that business leaders play in driving forward our region’s economy and in job creation. They champion those who provide inspiration for the next generation. Only those who have shown business excellence, ambition, commitment, innovation and strong leadership qualities will reach the shortlist.”  

Mr Newcomb is shortlisted in the small company category, for businesses with an annual turnover under £10m. The winners will be announced at a Champagne Breakfast ceremony on June 22, when the judges will announce a winner for each category as well as the overall West Midlands’ Director of the Year.
BMF MD shortlisted for Director of the Year Award. John Newcomb, MD of the BMF, is one of the top business leaders in the West Midlands shortlisted in the prestigious IoD Director of the Year Awards.

Starmer support for BMF on customs  

Sir Keir Starmer MP and Brett Amphlett“We want to negotiate to ensure there are no new Customs burdens when the United Kingdom leaves the European Union in two years’ time” was the message from Sir Keir Starmer MP to the BMF yesterday.  

The Shadow Brexit Secretary was answering a question from Brett Amphlett, who represented the BMF at a major Labour Party event in Westminster. Sir Keir gave a keynote televised speech to set out his Party’s approach to leaving the EU if Labour wins the forthcoming General Election.  

The BMF wants politicians of all parties to understand that leaving the Customs Union without a comprehensive UK-EU free trade agreement will unsettle business confidence and planned investments - with severe consequences for the merchants and manufacturers it represents.  

Sir Keir was asked whether the HMRC and port authorities have sufficient resources to deal with millions more customs declarations that will be necessary when the UK leaves the EU Customs Union. The BMF argues that if inspections at ports are not properly resourced, consignments will be stuck on quaysides causing unnecessary backlogs and delays in fulfilling customer orders.  

Sir Keir said that the country cannot have a situation where ‘no deal’ is better than a ‘bad deal’ and that there will have to be transitional arrangements to avoid uncertainty for affected businesses.  

The speech took place at the Institute of Civil Engineers in front of an invited audience of businessmen and women and political editors from the national print and broadcast media.  

Since the Prime Minister triggered the EU Article 50 clause, the BMF has been lobbying MPs to persuade the Government to negotiate a mutually-beneficial new customs agreement based on zero or low tariffs. More should be done to prepare for the possibility of no deal with the EU - and the unwanted extra bureaucratic and financial burdens that will arise from that, says the BMF.
Sir Keir Starmer MP and Brett Amphlett
Starmer support for BMF on Customs. “We want to negotiate to ensure there are no new customs burdens when the UK leaves the European Union in two years’ time” was the message from Sir Keir Starmer MP to the BMF yesterday.

UK Government industrial strategy: BMF response  

Building our Industrial StrategyA modern Industrial Strategy that showcases the construction industry, based on a clearly-defined, well-articulated mission to give it purpose, drive and direction, is the message to ministers from the BMF.  

The BMF was responding to a consultation that closed the day before the General Election announcement. The Federation welcomed the Government’s enthusiasm for a proper Industry Strategy and wants it to be a long-term partnership between government and business.  

The Government should be clearer in what it means by industrial strategy because often the word ‘industry’ is used to loosely describe not just manufacturing. Politicians would do well to remember that industries like construction and house-building cannot function properly without the active support of the building materials’ supply chain that the BMF represents.  

John Newcomb, Managing Director of the BMF, commented: “The Prime Minister’s decision to establish a new Department with the words Industrial Strategy in its name gives a clear signal as to her intentions. It confirms the approach is to carry on with the work done begun under the Coalition Government, and continued by the Conservatives, of a blend of horizontal policies, regional devolution and sector deals”.  

“This is not without a degree of risk because it perpetuates the advantage that certain companies and industries have in access to ministers. We believe it is better to pursue far-reaching action to support clearly-defined missions that affect many businesses, large and small, like merchants”.  

Mr Newcomb said the BMF wants parity of esteem between academic education and vocational training & skills. Without proper, structured careers advice and guidance, the concern is that young people are channelled into higher education that may prove to be the wrong choice for them.  

Contradictory funding announcements by ministers only serve to perpetuate this imbalance. The BMF has spotted that the new Institutes of Technology are due to receive £170 million which is less that the £240 million earmarked for the expansion of grammar schools.  

John Newcomb added that official figures show the West Midlands has a shortage of skilled workers. The proportion of highly-skilled people in the region is about 15% below the England average - and one in every eight people in the West Midlands have no qualifications.
UK Government industrial strategy: BMF response. A modern Industrial Strategy that showcases the construction industry, based on a clearly-defined, well-articulated mission to give it purpose, drive and direction, is the message to ministers from th

BMF Conference offers new slant on Peak Performance  

Kenton CoolKenton Cool has climbed all over the world, establishing new routes and first ascents of peaks in Alaska, France and India.  He is also one of the world’s most sought after guides and has successfully climbed Everest twelve times, including an ascent leading the explorer, Sir Ranulph Fiennes.  

His years in the mountains have taught him how to face and overcome his own challenges as well as how to bring out the best and inspire belief in those around him.   

John Newcomb, BMF MD said: “Leading teams into uncertain danger in the mountains - and bringing them back alive – provides valuable guidance on the criteria for a peak performing team.  Kenton’s presentation demonstrates both his passion for his sport and highly practical lessons for any high performance business.”  

The BMF All Industry Conference takes place in Budapest from 15 to 18 June 2017 at the five star Intercontinental Hotel.  Broadcaster and TV personality, Gethin Jones, will host the event, which has already sold out.  Further details are available on the Conference website at
Kenton Cool
BMF Conference offers new slant on Peak Performance. Kenton Cool, one of the world’s leading high altitude climbers, will draw on his experience of leading summit expeditions to offer insights into leadership in extreme moments at the BMF All Indust