Three-quarters of UK warehouse owners say their warehouses are full to capacity, according to yesterday's report. The threat of a no-deal Brexit sees stockpiling of goods as businesses prepare for delays at ports and increased trade tariffs.
In December, a survey of UKWA members reported that there was an 85% rise in Brexit-related inquiries and 75% of warehouses did not have the space to fulfil this increase in demand – turning down new business. The increase in demand has generally occurred throughout all industries, from food products to the pharmaceutical industry.
Reported in the Guardian, Richard Perriman, a UK Supply Chain Manager stated “We have seen more unsolicited inquiries from people out of the blue looking for space. We’re having almost daily conversations with clients about the impact of Brexit on them.”
Our Business Development Managers, who visit warehouses across the country daily, can confirm this trend and have seen a rise in demand for racking protection. Our North West Sales Representative states “Many of our clients are re-configuring the racking layout in their warehouses to allow more storage and stockpile capacity. There has been an increase in demand for rack legs, and many clients wish to entirely re-arrange layouts to give increased capacity.”
However, trends for new build warehouse projects do not align with this. Many newly built warehouses sit empty because companies are struggling to predict which products should be stockpiled. Our UK Sales Director deals with new build warehouse projects, he had the following to say: “Converse to today’s reported stockpiling and warehouses reaching capacity, I see a lot of the new warehouses that our safety barriers protect, sitting empty. Companies have no predictable end users, and without knowing what the end user will want, they don’t know what to fill new warehouses with.”
Whilst the Government arranges a Brexit deal, uncertainty lingers across all industries as business leaders prepare for future possibilities. Though Brexit commonly carries negative trade news for UK business, increased stockpiling and facility reconfiguration has led to an upturn in sales of our warehouse safety products and racking protection. This is welcome news for a leading UK manufacturer and exporter of industrial safety products.