Accessing invaluable industry expertise and experience was the key consideration for joining National Buying Group (NBG), according to the organisation’s newest Partner, Elec-Mec.

The bathroom, plumbing, heating, lighting and electrical merchant, which has branches in West London and Middlesex, has operated as an independent merchant for the past 25 years. Yet with Managing Director Vish Gami looking to grow the business’s brand and offering, joining a larger buying group became a priority. However, Vish was looking beyond solely the company’s bottom line when making his decision.

“Being part of a buying group has clear financial benefits, but this wasn’t the sole reason this particular buying group appealed to us,” explains Vish. “The scale and expertise available within NBG is what really stood out – there are 20-plus organisations like Elec-Mec in the group that can provide expertise and guidance. When historic, highly successful businesses are part of NBG and telling you how crucial it is to their success, joining really was a no-brainer.

“Having this outside guidance is massively important for us – we had previously been quite rigid in our thinking, working with certain brands just because it was what we had always done. Now I have access to mentors who I know are doing amazing things to innovatively meet industry challenges and can help me adjust my approach to benefit the business in the short and long term.”

Though Elec-Mec only recently became an NBG Partner, Vish has already seen the benefit of joining. Alongside working collaborative with other Partners, Elec-Mec has been able to outsource price negotiations to the group, removing a major administrative hurdle while allowing for better deals.

“Elec-Mec has always done well as an independent but joining a buying group has allowed us to break through a glass ceiling insofar as branding and pricing was concerned,” says Vish. “We are competing against a huge number of merchants in London, so being able to differentiate ourselves in these areas is key, and NBG is helping us do that.

“It’s easy to see the financial benefit of joining a buying group, but the value of talking to others and receiving honest, unbiased answers is gold, and you’re getting it for nothing. The thing I like about NBG is that from negotiating to discussing issues affecting the industry, everyone commits, so everyone benefits. We are very confident for the future – if you were to mark Elec-Mec’s trajectory for if we had or hadn’t joined NBG, I’m sure there would be a massive difference in terms of our success as a business.”

“We were thrilled to have Elec-Mec join NBG and have been extremely pleased to see that they are already benefitting so much from their new Partner status,” says Phil Bonar, New Partner Development & Recruitment Manager at NBG. “Vish and his team have already proved to be an excellent fit with the wider group’s ethos and culture, and their commitment to NBG’s collaborative values has been fantastic to see. We’re very excited to see how Elec-Mec will develop within the group and how we can support them at this exciting time.”