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Business leader takes top regional role

The managing director of a Telford-based builders’ merchants has been appointed to a key role in a national trade association.

James Hipkins, of Emerys Builders' Merchants, based in Stafford Park 4, is the new chairman of the Builders' Merchants Federation’s West Midlands Region. 

The Builders' Merchants Federation Ltd (BMF) represents and protects the interests of builders’ merchants and suppliers to the building materials industry in the UK and Ireland.

With 684 merchant and supplier companies who together have combined sales of £31.4bn and employ over 128,000 people in the building materials industry, it represents a considerable element of the UK economy.

As chairman of the West Midlands, James will lead the BMF’s activity across the region, and is particularly keen to highlight the career opportunities in the industry, emphasised by the BMF’s relaunched website http://www.buildingmaterialscareers.com/

James said: “It’s a real privilege to take on this role. I am looking forward to raising the profile of the builders’ merchants industry in the West Midlands and, in particular, promoting the wide range of careers in the sector. It’s not an industry that always springs to mind, but up and down the country builders’ merchants offer the traditional values associated with good service.

“We have, through the BMF, a defined career route and opportunities for people from all walks of life and it seems that once people join the industry, they stay and are reluctant to go elsewhere.”

James joined as MD Designate of Emerys Builders Merchants in 1999. The company employs 57 people at its Telford business and its other site, in Stoke-on-Trent.  

John Newcomb, CEO of the BMF, said: “James is a passionate supporter of the industry and we are delighted he is chairing our West Midlands region. We are pressing ahead with a bold strategy to attract and develop new people into the industry and the career achievements of our members such as James will play a key role in that.”

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