2020 marks a major milestone for Deco-Pak, the leading garden landscaping and decorative aggregates specialist, who will be celebrating its 15-year anniversary this year. From humble beginnings with just 10 decorative products in the range, the company has grown to now offer an extensive multi award winning offering including aggregates, garden decor, insect hotels, birdhouses and feeders. Here the company’s Marketing Director, Craig Hall, takes a nostalgic look back on how it all started and how far the business has come.
The birth and growth of Deco-Pak
The business began its life at the back end of 2004, a tight knit, but thriving family unit based in a small office in Huddersfield. The firm’s mission: to go above and beyond for its retail partners by providing quality products and expertise, to inspire consumers into creating their perfect outdoor space, as well as being kind to nature with its eco-friendly garden decoration products.
Starting with just a small line of decorative aggregates, the handful of employees worked together to expand this offering, with the emphasis on quality, and to market to garden and DIY retailers at the most competitive rates.
2005 saw the introduction of the first ever Deco-Pak logo, to create a brand presence amongst its customer base, perfectly demonstrating the traditional and humble beginnings of the business. Marketing and public relations campaigns soon started to build awareness in the industry, alongside presence at trade events. The Deco-Pak logo also started to become a familiar sight in garden centres and on product package so both the trade and consumers became confident with the new, exciting brand in the industry.
The following year saw paving introduced to the Deco-Pak range, whilst 2007 saw the company start to source and import garden water features from China. This further bolstered Deco-Pak’s product range and reputation supplying and delivering one of the most comprehensive collections of decorative, outdoor living materials in the industry.
What followed was a phenomenal period of growth, as Deco-Pak continued to expand by sourcing and launching new ranges of garden products, outdoor living décor and attractive landscaping solutions. Come 2009, the company’s product portfolio had greatly increased, sending sales soaring. Two thirds of Deco-Pak’s sales came from decorative aggregates, paving and water features, whilst the addition of DIY solutions, compost and rockery meant the company had to move into new premises and expanding twice in less than five years, settling in its present home in Brighouse, Yorkshire. The current warehouse and office, acres is over 3 times the size of their first site, reflecting the company’s market leading presence, and improving its stockholding of the additional ranges to meet customer demand.
With a new fresh and contemporary logo to match, Deco-Pak went from strength to strength and by 2018 was supplying over 500 product lines across the UK, Europe and Japan. Yet whilst the company has evolved significantly over the years, it has always remained true to its core business and is proud to supply many of the customers it worked with when it first started out in 2004.
Deco-Pak’s track record for producing a long line of innovative and cutting-edge product lines has certainly caught the approving eyes of the critics and gained them coveted industry awards. In 2008, the business was nominated as finalist in the Lloyds Business of the Year Awards, which recognise thriving entrepreneurial businesses, promising start-ups and established SMEs.
The recognition continued with the firm’s Milano Porcelain Paving winning the Landscaping Product of the Year award at Glee in 2016. It beat hundreds of entries in the New Products Awards with the judges highly impressed with the paving’s authentic wooden look and how it brought the inside out into the garden. 2017 saw Deco-Pak’s new Tower Insect Hotels named a worthy finalist in the eco- friendly category of the Giftware Association’s Gift of the Year awards, whilst Milano Porcelain Paving was nominated as a finalist in the GIMA Awards in the same year. The business then jumped to the top of the pecking order when their Quintessentially British Collection of decorative birdhouses scooped the Best Pet Care, Aquatics and Wild Bird Care accolade at the GIMA Awards in 2018.
Today’s innovative and eco garden trends
With nature and sustainability at the heart of Deco-Pak’s ethos and high on the public’s agenda, the business has continued to launch new collections of eco-friendly garden decoration products based on the latest consumer trends - Sustainability, Zen & Wellness, Play, and Enhance.
New for 2020 is EcoStone, a ground-breaking range made from recycled products. The flagship product, Glasglo, is a new innovative take on glass stones, pot topper stones and cobbles made from recycled television screens, whilst crushed whelks are re-used for EcoStone’s Seashells decorative toppers. The EcoPave Decorative Stepping Stone, made out of 30% recycled materials features attractive bee designs and donates to the Bumblebee Conservation Trust.
The Zen Garden Range takes inspiration from Japanese design and the demand to create a sense of relaxation and tranquillity in an outdoor space. From rakeable Zen Gravel to Zen Pebbles, to modern and stylish plug-in Zen-inspired water features, the latest collection provides retailers and consumers with the opportunity to replicate calming Japanese designs in store or at home to escape the stresses of everyday life, perfectly timed to tap into the Japanese interior and exterior trends that will flood the market as the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics take place this year.
The ‘Play’ trend sees Deco-Pak joining the movement for to encourage children to get back to nature with outdoor projects. Rockin’ Pebbles is inspired by the craze of decorating pebbles and leaving them for others to find, and is a fun activity to lure kids away from their phones, tablets and computer games.
Deco-Pak’s new Enhance line-up inspires consumers to create an inspiring, but low maintenance look for their outdoor living spaces. At the heart of the range are the quick-install Natural Stone Water Features which create a calming, tranquil focal point. UK-sourced Artificial Grass Laying Sand will help to achieve a lush green finish in homes, whilst the contemporary, pebble filled Gabion Bench and Gabion Cube tap into the latest urban design trends that consumers aspire to.
Deco-Pak is a business that likes to give back, it’s one of the special things embedded in the company culture. We have raised £4,750 for local charities Forget me not Children's Hospice Charity and Overgate. As well as over £3,500 for Greenfingers in the last 18 months. With Marketing Director, Craig a Greenfingers Ambassador, the company has played an important role fundraising for the charity. From special product promotions, such as its Play Sand to participating in activities and events, including Garden Re-Leaf Day, Greenfingers is a cause close to the family’s heart.
The entrepreneurial spirit has always been a part of the Deco-Pak family. Deco-Pak’s business and the team takes great pride in its heritage with father Mike at the helm, brother David in commercial as well as myself in marketing, all operating at a senior level in the business. Rod Slater, General Manager joined the ranks in 2014 to help further develop and enhance the team with his extensive knowledge within the industry.
Reaching 15 years in business is a big achievement but looking back over the company’s history makes you realise just how far we’ve come. Deco-Pak has become one of the industry’s leading garden businesses and we pride ourselves on the quality of our products and our work.
Over the past 15 years, we’ve worked with hundreds of retailers on both large and small contracts and have built a strong reputation. This year is an exciting time for us as we’re expanding into new areas and we’re growing from strength to strength. We’re proud of our past and we’re also looking forward to our future.
Find out more
To find out more about Deco-Pak’s leading line up of innovative products, visit www.deco-pak for more information.