UPONOR
Partnering with Uponor

Uponor Partnership with Ventrade International

Interview with Ventrade International about cooperation with Uponor

Partnering with Uponor – How Ventrade International shortened its installation time by 40%, stayed competitive in a changing market, and resolved workforce shortages


Ventrade International is one of the most prominent Hungarian companies offering construction engineering services. The company is primarily focused on the design and construction of industrial and mechanical systems, covering installation, distribution, professional commissioning, and servicing of HVAC elements.

Offering a wide range of engineering services, from planning to execution and maintenance, Ventrade pays close attention to its customers’ needs. Its most significant selling point is its provision of quick and efficient HVAC equipment deployments. With this customer-centric approach, the organisation has steadily grown, with revenues of more than 10M euros annually.

Challenging times for the HVAC sector

Modern office buildings always ask for more innovation from the construction sector. The same can be said for the HVAC equipment sector, where customer needs dictate everything from design and production to distribution and installation. Today, commercial building architects want top-quality products that guarantee optimal indoor comfort. They also need service to be as quick and efficient as possible, so their tenants can move in faster. As a result, due dates for construction work completion are becoming tighter and more demanding.

However, these challenges in the construction sector are not new. Five years ago, material prices started to increase, and traditional steel pipe systems became obsolete due to long installation times. On top of that, the cost of labour was rising while the number of qualified workers was shrinking.


Challenges for Ventrade

Ventrade International knew it needed to change how it did business amid these struggles. As a reputable installation company known for its expertise in office buildings, it had to develop a new approach to serve its customers better.
 
"Our customers typically want everything ready in six to eight weeks, and you need systems that can deploy in such a short time frame. Also, it is essential that the materials are promptly available and that we don't have long wait times, so we consider how fast the wholesaler can supply equipment for the projects. Finally, tooling is a big issue for us. It's a large investment, especially for bigger diameters that are typically hard to obtain in Hungary. Tools get lost, broken, or stolen and need continuous supplier support," said Csaba Jónás, Business Sales Director, Ventrade International.

To be able to respond to its customer needs with fast deployments, Ventrade International sought solutions that could ensure the following:

•          Faster installation times
•          Consistent availability of materials
•          Smooth wholesaler supply chain processes
•          Quick education about new technologies and materials for their staff
•          Simpler tools that don't require complex training for installation

"We gave up on the legacy installation system based on black steel pipes for several reasons. Firstly, they take much more time for deployment, as they need welding and painting, plus their adjustments to a specific space are complex. Secondly, they require skilled workers and subcontractors, which are very difficult to find in Hungary. As a replacement, we needed something modern and reliable, with a much better support system," said Csaba Jónás.



Partnership with Uponor

The company didn't have to look far in its search for a partner that could ensure Ventrade International stayed competitive in the market. Because Ventrade has relied on Uponor's products for over ten years, it knows the organisation’s quality standards very well. Over the years, the partnership has deepened with the introduction of new technologies and systems, which only strengthened the relationship.
 
"The reliability of Uponor's teams has always been a significant component of our relationship. Here's a concrete example of how that works. If, for example, we order a 15-millimetre pipe elbow on Monday to complete a project in the shortest time possible, Uponor makes that available for us by Wednesday. That kind of support is unmatched on the market," – Csaba Jónás.
 

Uponor's solution

Ventrade uses the entire portfolio of Uponor's products for heating and cooling, with a specific focus on these three solutions:
 
•          Radiant heating and cooling systems for walls, ceilings, and floors. To ensure that office building tenants enjoy a pleasant room temperature year-round, Ventrade typically offers Uponor's systems for radiant cooling and heating due to their high-level comfort, energy efficiency, and noise prevention characteristics.

•          Flexible Ecoflex pre-insulated pipes. Suitable for heating, cooling, and water distribution, Ecoflex pipes combine excellent heat loss prevention with high flexibility and easy installation. Another advantage is that the system’s adaptability means users can choose their heat source.

•          Uni Pipe PLUS drinking water multilayer pipe. The world's first composite pipe with a seamlessly extruded aluminium layer comes without a welded joint and ensures fast and efficient installation. With less time for the deployment and fewer components, it is designed to save costs and provide greater flexibility.

Another critical element in Uponor's offerings is its support throughout all project phases, from training to design, delivery, and site support.

"The training experience, led by industry experts, is exceptional, and the solutions are straightforward and easy to learn," Csaba Jónás added.
 

Uponors's solution

Ventrade International managed to stay competitive and resilient in the HVAC market, despite the challenges and changes over the past years. Today, it thrives and is known for its quick and reliable installations. With Uponor's support and partnership, Ventrade can work on projects of any size and deliver solutions built for the present and the future.

•          Installation completed 40% faster

It's pretty clear that for Ventrade, speed is of the utmost importance. Therefore, Uponor's solutions, which can be deployed quickly, play a big part in customer success. If the company used traditional steel pipe systems, Ventrade would need at least 40% more time to complete everything. Plus, it wouldn't be able to create competitive offers. The typical requirement for completing a heating and cooling installation in a 1,000 square meter office space is around six weeks. With Uponor's solutions, based on modern materials and technologies, Ventrade can easily meet these requirements and win even the most demanding construction deals.

•          Flexible pipes and complete solutions

Uponor's products are known for their high level of flexibility. Among them are flexible Ecoflex pre-insulated pipes, available in various forms and sizes. That detail is critical for Ventrade when its teams need to adapt HVAC equipment to a particular space. In addition, pipes are easy to install and customise. Their range of diameters satisfies the needs of many different office requirements.

•          Shortage of workers – resolved

The complex installation of steel pipes requires welding, among other things, which only a small number of workers are trained to do. With Uponor's modern materials that eliminate this process, Ventrade resolved one of its top pain points: the shortage of skilled workers. With Uponor's fast and effective training programs, Ventrade can quickly help onboard new team members or subcontractors.

•          Fewer resources, more reliability

Compared to the black steel pipe system, Uponor's solutions have two significant advantages:
o          plastic pipes don't require painting, which is a 100% time and money saving
o          Uponor's plastic pipes don't leak, which is a common issue with black steel pipes – and a considerable burden from a maintenance perspective
 

A look into the future

Uponor and Ventrade International continue to serve the construction sector with modern, fast, and reliable services and products. Together, they create win-win-win scenarios where everybody benefits: Uponor, Ventrade, and its investors and construction customers. Another significant component of their present and future success is their collaborative relationship.
 
"We live in unstable times, and while no one knows what to expect on a global level, we feel safer by having Uponor as our reliable partner. They provide that stability and integrity throughout our relationships; they listen and respond to our market needs," Jónás concluded.