Gifts Today magazine

Filias Agencies Q&A
Covid-19/online interview special

Gifts Today is aiming to be the online hub of our industry amid these uncertain times. We will be running regular online interviews with key suppliers, starting here with Simon Pykett of Filias Agencies, who talks about coping with the crisis, and the fabulous Danish company Bloomingville

Simon, how are you all? How’s your team’s morale?

Filias Agencies Ltd is a company I founded in June 2016 that specialises in selling premium European brands to retailers, interior designers and online companies here in the UK. By far our most successful brand to date is the Danish company Bloomingville. I have a team of sales agents covering the UK and moral is high. We have Bloomingville to thank for this.

How are you coping with staffing levels - ensuring staff are okay and that you’re abiding by government regulations?
Bloomingville reacted very quickly and professionally to the current situation. Firstly, all their office staff were sent home to work reducing the risk of infection at the office. This has also meant that the day to day interaction between me, the customers and my sales team has continued seamlessly. Orders are still being taken and deliveries are being made. So, thanks to the quick and efficient reaction from Bloomingville, me and my team can ‘keep calm and carry on’.

Are you a company where some staff can comfortably work remotely?
Yes, again Bloomingville make this very easy for us. They support our customers with the industry’s leading B2B web shop, enabling them to place orders, check stock levels and download high resolution images to use in any marketing campaigns. In addition, me and my team have access to a B2C site so we can also place orders and support any customer enquiry with answers at our fingertips.

How clear have you found government guidelines so far?
For us they are workable. Clearly, we will be affected by all that is happening but now that we have daily briefings we can respond daily also.

Do you feel the government is offering enough support?
They are certainly offering a lot of money and we can only hope that is enough. Time will tell but I am optimistic.

Business strategies you have in place to assist the continual smooth running of your business.
Bloomingville are lowering the order level by which they will deliver freight free. This will enable our customers to order just what they need, little and often to keep their business going without having to make big stock commitments.

Do you have any helpful advice or additional support you are offering your retailers?

We will get through this, so lets all try and keep our nerve. Also, where retailers have a web shop then it’s now a good time to push this and they can use the support of Bloomingville image bank via the B2B site

Do you have any additional information or imagery of new ranges you could circulate to retailers to put onto their own websites should their bricks and mortar store have to close?
Yes, again they should go to the B2B site where there are some great lifestyle images to assist.

Have you currently got good stock levels to meet supply demand and the logistics in place to aim for smooth delivery?
Absolutely. There are over 3000 references in the Bloomingville collection, and our warehouse is running smoothly. Using the B2B site customers can see not only if an item is out of stock but also when we can expect the next delivery. With this they can either choose to wait or select something similar.

Do you feel that you may have any stock issues on the horizon and, if so, how will you seek to overcome these?
No company will be unaffected by what’s happening, but close attention is always paid to the best sellers in our collection and Bloomingville are working hard to keep the greater percentage in stock.

What’s your online presence and social media set-up like? Do you plan on boosting your online presence in weeks to come?

Absolutely, Bloomingville are masters at this and most certainly the team will be doing all they can to keep up the momentum starting with a campaign to push the lower free freight level.

How will you continue to drive awareness to your product ranges?
At a time when some companies are holding back with a wait and see approach, Bloomingville have just committed to exhibit at the Autumn fair for the first time; a significant investment and a reflection of the potential they see for business in the UK.

What can Gifts Today do to provide you with to help you with your current objectives?
Ask your readers to visit and explore the wonderful and ever popular, Nordic collection. From there, they will be able to request to become a stockist. Or of course they can contact me.

Simon Pykett, Country Manager, Bloomingville
Call (mobile): 0044 (0) 7967 209156

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