Sales and Marketing Director – Infrastructure led Building Product
An investment backed SME has just developed a unique asphalt product, which they have taken through the R&D stage. Having put in place a loose sales structure throughout EMEA and the Far East and they now required a strategic lead in this area.
Markets range from civil engineering applications in the highway, airport and high-speed test track, sectors. The company has also partnered several civil engineering contractors such as Colas, Carillion, FM Conway and Kutter Spezialstrabenbau.
THE BUSINESS CHALLENGE
Through their fledgling network of agents and distributors globally, the company had developed an interest in the new technology through demonstrations. Conversions were low, with potential suitors nervous of investing in untried technology.
The company recognised there was a need to not only convert these expensive demonstrations but to get a suitable Director in place who could drive sales and have influence with some of the bigger contractors/toll road owners.
The Sales and Marketing Director will deliver sustained revenue and profit growth across both domestic and international markets. They will be required to create and actively implement strategic marketing plans to drive product awareness with existing and new customers, driving distribution channels abroad. It was envisaged the position would effectively be the number two to the Managing Director in developing and implementing an overall business strategy.
Through listening to the client, it was clear they required a broad sweep of the infrastructure led building products marketplace. Their initial thoughts being that the individual would need to know a product aligned with theirs. Through our exposure into this sub-sector, Collingwood was able to provide consultancy to the client and suggested an approach that would open up the brief to encompass a broad portfolio of product manufacturers selling into their target market.
It was clear that they required more than just a high-level negotiator with a contact book, and so a thorough exploration was needed to understand the make-up of the senior team identifying any weaknesses from a commercial angle. Clearly, this person would need a firm grip on strategic marketing/analysis with the ability to shape channels and an awareness of the associated country markets.
Categorising target organisations into those closely aligned to the clients’ products and those selling into the same space, Collingwood identified 58 companies. From these, 60 individual names were gathered from subsidiaries, referrals and suppliers. All were confidentially approached by phone. The client was updated weekly with details progress to date - numbers called, interested candidates and any obstacles we were finding. Equally, we were able to suggest alternatives to product ranges and offer updated package details based on market intelligence.
From an original longlist of 16 interested candidates, Collingwood met 7, assessed and wrote reports on 4. The client met all 4 with 2 invited back to second interview and a subsequent offer made.
From there Collingwood managed a lengthy notice period through to completion. During this time a counteroffer was made. Our consultant met face-to-face with the candidate to ensure they could have an in-depth discussion to truly understand how they felt about the offer and the future potential of both roles. Having discussed thoroughly the opportunities available, our candidate chose to accept our clients offer, as they were excited by the diversity and empowerment the new role offered.
Throughout this process Collingwood proactively engaged with the client to provide advice and guidance, ensuring our client did not miss out on appointing the best candidate for the role