Hallgruppen install buildings worldwide, are long established in 7 countries and now operate across UK and Ireland. We provide temporary and permanent demountable buildings adapted to all industries, locations and applications: We Cover Anything Anywhere!

Ian Mackenzie General Manager

We install clear-span buildings very quickly on your existing hardstanding, greatly reducing the costs and lead-time compared to other solutions and conventional build methods – and we offer steel buildings as large/bespoke as needed. Standalone structures, links or extensions, buildings configured as required – we offer genuine USPs in product options and commercial terms (including fantastic prices).

It’s definitely worth speaking to Hallgruppen when you’re looking for new facilities!

Ian Mackenzie, General Manager at Hallgruppen speaks to Warehouse & Logistics News.

When did HALLGRUPPEN come to the UK, and why?

I started in my post at the start of January and my first two colleagues March 1st, spending a week in and around Oslo each time (No.4 and 5 started on September 1st, and included a man in Ireland, so nice growth). This is the 8th year for Hallgruppen and the UK is the 8th country where we have an operation – we started here simply in the firm belief that there’s a growing market and an excellent opportunity for us in the UK, especially as we have some outstanding advantages not yet known here.

What solutions do HALLGRUPPEN offer customers?

Our marketing strap line is “Cover anything anywhere”. We offer buildings and structures for a wide range of industries, applications and situations, always quickly and cost-effectively. We’re always trying to do that better, faster and cheaper so there’s a well-supported culture of continuous improvement to satisfy that ambition. We might install a simple standalone small storage structure really quickly for a company needing support during peak season, or a covered loading area to keep Goods In/Out dry, an assembly or workshop area suitable for R & D, right up to a turnkey project factory-integrated fully-fitted extension with energy-efficient insulation, compliance-satisfying sealing and insurance-pleasing fire resilience. And geography doesn’t matter; with our Norwegian designed products and many buildings across Scandinavia (including the Arctic Circle), no weather is too much.

What sectors do these clients work in?

Our focus in the UK begins with the key industrial applications: logistics/transport, warehousing, all aspects of manufacturing, packaging, energy, aviation, mining, construction and waste and recycling. But based on our international experience and customer numbers, that will quickly expand to include sports and leisure, education, retail, commercial, events, military and humanitarian.

What makes HALLGRUPPEN unique in your industry?

I’d really like to mention the smart, happy, engaged and friendly helpful people at Hallgruppen as this was genuinely the first thing that surprised me when I started, but I fear I’d sound stereotypical as that’s what most folk would expect to hear, so I’ll bring it down to earth with a mention of our tangible advantages which customers will enjoy.

We operate in two distinct markets, steel portal frame structures and aluminium-framed structures, often called Temporary Buildings (or semi-permanent, depending on who you ask). There are plenty of companies in each of those areas but few in both – and few with our size, breadth of offer and experience.

Last Financial Year Hallgruppen turned over more than 120 million Euros (and still growing well) which means we operate at scale and is the main reason we offer market-shaking prices. In the UK we’re gearing up to concentrate on the popular aluminium framed product first and are stocking our new warehouse to be able to offer standard sizes really, really quickly. That’s a product that’s often seen in the UK, but we bring a couple of key innovations – namely a frame design that doesn’t need internal supports (eave height wires or side support trusses) so the full internal space, including roof, is fully available. Then there’s our ISO covers; thick fibre filled PVC covers which are fitted as a single piece and offer a quicker, more energy and cost-effective solution with better insulation and sealing than the popular equivalent of an inflated PVC roof and sandwich panel walls (which we also offer, but would like the chance to show and explain our ISO covers too!)

Those aluminium-framed buildings may be temporary (and are fairly easily relocated) and as such many customers are interested in renting them. We offer outstanding and fair rental terms which, when you compare with others, we think you’ll love.

And you needn’t have a PVC roof on your aluminium frame building, even if it is intended for temporary use – if you want a steel roof, we can happily offer that too.

But for the occasions where an aluminium frame won’t work (e.g. very harsh weather, much larger size and/or height needed, permanent expectations…) then we offer steel framed structures designed by our in-house team of engineers according to your specific requirements, including bespoke shapes and sizes.

What does your role involve on a day-to-day basis?

I really love my job! It’s true I occasionally envy my sales colleagues their focused role, but it’s impossible to get bored in mine as there’s so much variety. Early weeks were recruiting people and looking for a warehouse/office location, alongside helping Marketing get our message right for the UK. Then there’s plenty of the sales work of answering enquiries, visiting prospective customer’s sites (the length and breadth of the UK) and presenting at exhibitions (11 Expos this year, how cool is that?!), but there’s also the organising the warehouse, transportation, upcoming builds and the satisfaction of attending a build site for a customer you’ve seen through from the start of the conversation to the point they move in to their new facility. I’m sure I missed some bits off there!

How future-proof and flexible are your solutions?

I can think of a few different meanings for that and yes to all of them! Firstly there’s recent economic times and the state of the market which seems to favour the cash-flow friendly and flexible nature of a rental; we’re definitely winning some deals by our ability to satisfy customers financial expectations. Then there’s the modular functionality at least with our standard buildings where they can be easily added to (or taken away from) lengthways as a customer’s business requirements (or the regulatory or compliance environment) might change. And also future proof in terms of the recyclability (or degradability) of materials and our innovation work to continually improve that.

What do you see as the biggest opportunities in the coming year for HALLGRUPPEN?

Scaling the new UK business to an optimum size once our name and product range is better known will bring the simple opportunity of more business, particularly as we’re able to offer outstanding prices and fair flexible rental terms. But I know there are entirely new products in the pipeline too and that’s just another reason to be excited!


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