Review Of 2014

In the year when England famously crashed out of the world cup and Andy Murray failed to win Wimbledon, at Caribbean we’re pleased to report we had what can only be described as a bumper year.

It’s fair to say we experienced some of the best weather yet, with a prolonged Summer and Spring like Winter weather (both at the start and end of the year) with generally speaking very little rain overall in comparison to previous years.

Confidence in the economy also appeared to slightly improve, with people investing in their properties, typically the building of single storey extensions to provide additional living space and increase the value of their homes. Much of this was and continues to be fuelled by programmes like Sarah Beeny's Channel 4 – Double Your House For Half The Money, and Kevin McClouds, Channel 4 – Grand Designs. Latest figures released on the gov.uk website show for 2014, there was a small but noteable increase in the number of planning applications received (and granted) by local authorities in comparison to 2013.

It is therefore probably no surprise that enquiry levels rose in 2014 by 38% compared to 2013, however, so did competition both in the form of cheap ‘unfit for purpose’ imported products, primarily awnings, which can be picked up for a few hundred pounds online, although after the first gust of wind you will also be likely be picking them up off your terrace, and the number of unskilled companies working from home increased, ‘bolting’ these types of products onto their offering, normally always underselling the product, specifying the wrong system and poorly installing them.

Despite the increased competition and trading conditions (as in every industry sector) remaining tough since the economy crashed in 2008, our unique approach to selling; providing genuine, honest, expert advice – no high pressure sales people, just shading experts who love what they do, coupled with innovative products that genuinely offer a superior specification, both in terms of function, performance and durability to any others, has resulted in an increase in sales of 25.12%.

As a breakdown across our product groups, 2014 against 2013:

> Patio Awning sales were up by 12%

> Outdoor Living Pod sales were up by 67%

> External Blind (roller and roof blinds) sales were up by 58%

And things don’t show any signs of slowing down for 2015, as we have entered the new year with the largest order book in the companies entire 28 year history and have an unprecedented number of enquiries for what is usually the quietest time of the year. So a big thank you to all our customers, both new and existing, along with all our staff who each play an important role in the success of the company and ensuring we are at the very top of our field.

Don't forget, if you want to get your home and/or garden ready for the Summer, our January Sale offers fantastic savings across all our products – find out more here.

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