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North West Meet the Buyer event

A record breaking event for Constructionline at Haydock Park Racecourse

Held at Haydock Park Racecourse in Newton-Le-Willows on 19th November, Constructionline’s North West Meet the Buyer event saw over 600 contractors, consultants and material suppliers attend to meet a record number of 33 exhibiting buyers from the public and private sector to discuss multi-millions of pounds worth of work opportunities.

Olga Gough, Client Relationship Manager at Constructionline said, “We understand the growing need for buyers in the North West to find local sub-contractors to deliver their projects and keep money within the local economy. What’s more, we also recognise the value of providing our suppliers with the chance to meet buyers in person, to understand how they can tender for upcoming work.”

Olga added, “The event at Haydock offered a great opportunity for local SMEs and leading buyers to come together to discuss potential work opportunities.”

Work opportunities on offer

Amongst the packed roster of exhibitors in attendance were main contractors including Wates, Seddon Construction, Bouygues UK and Mears, as well as public sector clients such as Highways England, Oldham Council and the North West Construction Hub.

Keen to discuss their £1.2 billion campus master plan, the University of Manchester exhibited to find suppliers for the project, which includes new build construction and refurbishment of the University’s existing education facilities, as well as opportunities in the pipeline to deliver wider developments for the University, ranging in value from £1 million to £10 million.

Carrie Carter Strategic Supplier Business Manager at Highways England also exhibited at the event, she told us; “This event was one of the busiest we’ve been to, and a great opportunity to connect with local SMEs. We made contact with a number of paving and roadwork contractors that we’re really keen to follow up with.” 

“We wanted to connect with contractors for our Building and Associated Works Framework and were impressed with the level of interest we received on our stand,” explained Colin Prentice, Responsive Maintenance Manager at Wigan Council. “As well as the opportunity touch base with some of our existing suppliers; we met a lot of new contacts that we’d like to work with. We were able to direct them to the CHEST (the North West’s local authority procurement portal) so they could express an interest in our opportunity.”

Meeting the key players

One of the biggest challenges suppliers often face is getting in front of potential clients to speak about their opportunities. Our Meet the Buyer events are designed to solve this issue by providing a platform where they can meet procurement decision makers face-to-face.

Liam Bleers, Specificatons Manager at Reynaers Aluminium attended the event to make the most of the business development opportunity, he told us; “This event offered a fantastic chance to speak to the key people from some of the top clients in the region. I have generated some good leads today and have a couple of follow up meetings booked in my diary already.”

Matthew Lord, Sales Executive at Ashtead Plant Hire Ltd added; “I was really impressed with the amount of opportunities on offer today. I’ve made some good leads that I’ll be busy following up next week.”

An insight into future projects

As well as the chance to network, suppliers attended seminar presentations held, alongside the event, by influential leaders from top organisations in the construction industry. Speakers at the event included Manchester University, who spoke about the details of their campus master plan, and Dr David Hancock, Head of Construction at the Cabinet Office who took to the stage to provide attendees with an insight into the planned government construction projects for 2016.

Also joining us at the event to speak to attendees about supply chain opportunities were Capita Property and Infrastructure and the North West Construction Hub.