One of the biggest innovations to boost the metals industry in more than 50 years has reported a promising first nine months.
SteelBuy, an easy-to-use online marketplace where businesses can buy and sell metals quickly and securely, has recorded over 300 transactions and £1m+ sales revenue since it was launched at the start of the year.
Users from across the UK are leveraging the technology to achieve faster and more efficient deals for their mild steel, stainless steel, and aluminium, with all the logistics and invoicing managed through the encrypted platform.
Sellers can post their material with product specifications, test certificates and price per tonne and these can be found by potential buyers within seconds. With listings taking just one minute to complete, it is estimated that 37 hours can be saved each week in the average purchasing and sales function.
Importantly, all transactions are anonymised so buyers and sellers do not know who the other party is, essential when sensitive data, such as prices and stockholding, must remain confidential.
“This is much more than just a place to buy and sell materials,” explained Terry Sargeant, CEO of SteelBuy.
“We are not just providing an exciting new channel for customers to buy and sell metals, we are selling a vision of the future of the industry.”
He continued: “SteelBuy enables users to effortlessly digitalise their purchasing and sustainably modernise their business and this is just the start – there’s so much unexplored potential in materials trading and distribution, through the power of digitalisation.
“The metals sector is traditional by its very nature, yet just eight months after our launch and we have proven time and time again that we can reduce costs, boosts sales and speed up what can be an extremely time-consuming process.”
SteelBuy was the original idea of Cameron Sargeant, who came up with the idea of selling material online whilst working in sales for thyssenkrupp.
22 people were recruited for the new venture, a mix of software, marketing, sales and engineering experts, who all share a passion for harnessing the power of digitalisation in the metals industry.
Terry, who has been involved in the sector for more than 40 years, went on to add: “We’ve got producing mills, steel service centres, stockholders and even traders using our platform, with the average delivery time of metal, from listing to arriving at the buyer, at just three days.
“This is transformative for both parties. When it comes to buying steel and aluminium, deals often take too long to complete, with lead times traditionally excessive (up to 12 weeks for mill production) – we can reduce this by almost 90% by matching supply and demand.
“For sellers, we deliver greater market visibility and reach for both your surplus metals and commodity products. By using our online platform, they have an opportunity to sell to anyone, from anywhere and not have to worry about relationships, payment terms or credit risks. SteelBuy removes all the hassle.”
Shirley-based SteelBuy has ambitious plans to take its technology into the European marketplace, as well as rolling out new features that reflect user feedback to make the process even easier.
The company will be making its first public exhibition appearance this week, when it looks to showcase the huge benefits of its online platform on Stand F50 at the UK Metals Expo (13-14th September) in Birmingham.
Terry concluded: “We have big plans, and we won’t stop until SteelBuy is the largest global online marketplace for the metals industry.
“Initial feedback has been really encouraging, not to mention the 300% growth in transactions we’ve seen over the last six months.”