The Wavin Group is Europe’s leading supplier of plastic pipe systems and solutions. It provides integrated above and below ground solutions for water supply, sewer, drainage, infiltration, surface heating and cooling, soil and waste and last mile telecom. In addition to top quality products, Wavin offers customers end-to-end solutions, which include consultation and design services, product support as well as implementation and after-sales service. Wavin is headquartered in Zwolle (the Netherlands) and today is active in 27 European countries, with around 40 manufacturing sites. Following the acquisition of UK-based Hepworth Building Products in April 2005, the company employs approximately 7,300 people.
The Wavin Group is actively expanding its presence across Europe by selective acquisitions, the opening of new plants and depots and the extension of its sales network. During 2005, Wavin opened a new factory in Moscow.
In addition to having own facilities in almost all European countries, the company markets its products and technologies in other parts of the world. Through the acquisition of Hepworth, Wavin now has its first production facility outside Europe in Foshan, China.
Wavin Overseas is the central export organisation of the Wavin Group. It has a growing network of over 120 agents and licensed partners who are active in Asia, Australia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and North America.
Technology and Innovation
The Wavin Group invests considerably in the development of new products and processes. With its own Technology and Innovation Centre (Wavin T&I), the Group is widely recognised for its technical expertise in plastic pipe systems and solutions. The expert staff of Wavin T&I and local companies drive innovation. The company recently upgraded its pilot plant to improve effectiveness and speed in producing new sample products.
In 2005, Wavin Nederland received a prestigious innovation award which was presented by the Prime Minister of the Netherlands for “being leading in innovative solutions for effective water management for 50 years.”..
Reputation built on experience
Wavin’s widespread reputation is build on over fifty years of experience. The company’s manufacturing roots lie in a modest factory in Zwolle where Europe’s first large diameter plastic pipe for water distribution was produced. The launch of this product was an important event at that time since it marked an end to contamination of drinking water caused by corrosion of traditional pipe materials. Wavin was officially founded on 5 August 1955 – its name deriving from WAter and VINyl chloride. In the decades that followed, activities were expanded and the product range extended. Today, Wavin’s product range consists of over 30,000 different items.
The Wavin Group operates mainly in the business-to-business market. Innovative and tailor-made solutions are offered to customers and end-users such as plumbers and installers, municipal councils and other public authorities, contractors, civil engineers, architects and building wholesalers and merchants.
Local presence and market knowledge ensure awareness of customers’ needs. At the same time, the business in which Wavin operates is becoming more and more international. European product development and co-ordinated cross border sales and marketing initiatives are of growing importance. Against this background, Wavin has formed two Strategic Business Units, based in its head office in Zwolle:
- Civils & Infrastructure (below ground systems and services), which includes pipe systems for water supply, sewer, drainage, storm water management and irrigation as well as cable ducting solutions for telecommunication, signalling and electricity distribution networks.
- Building & Installation (above ground systems and services), which includes systems for tap water, surface heating and cooling, soil and waste applications, rainwater and electricity. Working closely with local experts in the operating companies, the Strategic Business Units co-ordinate product and market development within an international strategic framework.
The corporate strategy of the Wavin Group is to be recognised as the leading European supplier of plastic pipe systems and solutions, unrivalled in geographic presence, service, innovation and product range. The company is fully aware that today’s customers look for a partner who is in tune with new technological and market developments and on whom they can rely for innovative and complete solutions. A supplier that will deliver their products as promised without hassle – anytime, anywhere.
Wavin has the capabilities, the scale and the international presence to meet these needs. Its market strategy is underpinned by ongoing innovation, product diversification and ‘just in time’ logistics.
Meeting the highest quality standards
Wavin continuously monitors the quality of its products and solutions. The company maintains high standards of quality and is committed to providing customers with consistent and highly professional services. The company’s ISO 9001 international certificate of quality is a recognition of this commitment.
Concern for the environment
Today, customers prefer to do business with a supplier who is responsive to the increasing concern for the environment. Wavin is a frontrunner in sustainable development and environmental care. The company is not only Europe’s leading manufacturer of plastic pipe systems but also one of the largest recyclers of PVC.
Furthermore, as a member of The European Plastics Pipes and Fittings Association (TEPPFA), Wavin is a driving force in the initiative to expand collection and recycling systems for used plastic pipes and fittings.
The company has made significant progress in phasing out lead-based stabilisers from its products and is confident that the target of producing all products without lead by the end of 2007, will be met.
Health, safety and environmental (HSE) risks associated with Wavin business activities are identified, controlled and monitored, using – amongst others – ISO 14000 certification. To read more about Wavin's HSE policy, please click here.
Taking care of people
Wavin is committed to an open, honest and straightforward working environment based on mutual trust and respect for diversity. Individual talent, skills and experience have always been professionally recognised and promoted. Wavin offers opportunities for people to pursue their goals, both professionally and personally. The company reviews each individual’s performance and has processes to identify and track ‘High Potentials’. Special attention is being paid to management development programmes and international management exchanges.
Local Wavin companies maintain formal processes to inform, consult and involve employees and their representatives on relevant issues. A European Consultative Council has been in existence for several years and provides a forum for discussing issues that extend across national boundaries.