News & Views


A panel discussion on the long-term sustainability of the merchant route to market for bathroom manufacturers will be held at the BMA’s annual conference, it has been announced. A panel of experts with varying views on the future viability of the merchant channel will lead the debate. Conference delegates will be invited to ask panellists questions and contribute their views in what is expected to be a controversial and lively debate.

Recent years have seen online retailers and blended ‘click and collect’ offers grow market share versus traditional builders’ merchants. However, since lockdown restrictions have eased, some merchants have reported record monthly sales.

BMA Chief Executive Tom Reynolds is looking forward to the discussion:

“In recent years there have been some indications of fundamental changes afoot in channels to market for bathroom manufacturers. Online has experienced massive growth, with innovation happening all the time. Yet some major online retail names have failed, at the same traditional merchants have been booming. Nothing is clear cut”.

“Our conference in 2021 is all about sustainability in our sector, and a key part of that is understanding what is going on in our channels to market. The merchant model has been around a long time but is it sustainable for the future. We have assembled an expert panel with varying views on this. I expect a fiery but informative debate.”

BMA’s annual conference is taking place on 7-8 June 2021 at Carden Park in Cheshire. Bookings are now being taken on the BMA website. Numbers are capped and the venue is AIM-accredited, ensuring a COVID-safe conference.

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