Rachel Kay, managing director of Green Tech, provides an insight into the inner workings of her landscaping materials and wholesale garden supplies business

Can you give us a bit of background on the firm?

Green-tech is the leading supplier in the UK of landscape products to the landscaping, forestry and horticultural industries.  We are a multi-award-winning company that services the requirements of landscape contractors, designers and architects, construction companies and professional growers across the UK and beyond.

Green-tech Ltd was founded by Richard and Rachel Kay in 1994 from their spare room in Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire. Today they employ more than 80 local staff with a turnover in excess of £12 million and have their own purpose-built business park which houses their offices, production units and substantial warehousing and distribution operation.

Green-tech was a winner in the recent BALI awards – Affiliate Exceptional Service Category, and won the Supplier Category in the Pro Landscaper Business Awards.

What is the most exciting piece of work you have done as a firm recently?

We are lucky enough to get involved in so many interesting and exciting projects across the UK and beyond. A recent one that was fabulous to be involved with, was the creation of a roof garden at the New US London Embassy on Ponton Road. We supplied 5,100 sqm of gt Roofdrain for this prestigious job. gt Roofdrain is an innovative product for green roof spaces; it collects and stores water to irrigate plants when rainfall is low,  yet provides continuous high performance drainage later across the roof structure.

Have you seen much changes in the industry over the years?

So many changes, especially over the last decade.  The use of technology has really changed the way in which we communicate and interact as a business.  It has changed the ways in which customers’ contact and order from us and has sped up the order to delivery process hugely.

The last few years has seen the industry recognising the importance of the younger generation for the future of landscaping and the number of apprenticeships and interest in landscaping as a career has really increased. We have also seen a surge in demand for products for green spaces, green screening and biodiversity.  The importance and contribution these areas bring is better recognised and of real significance to many landscaping projects.

In your opinion what is your most unique product?

I would say us – the company; the team.  This is what sets us apart from our competitors.  It’s what makes Green-tech unique and it has made us the largest and leading supplier of landscaping products in the UK.  We have the full gamut of products from everyday landscaping essentials to some unique and revolutionary products, but what really makes the difference is Green-tech as a whole.  We are a one-stop-shop with a can-do attitude. We have vast stock holding capabilities, highly trained sales advisers and a next day delivery service. In a recent survey 99% of respondents rated Green-tech as good or excellent overall.  This number had remained static from the previous year’s survey which is testimony to our consistently high output and commitment to meeting our customers’ needs.

What’s in store for the firm in the coming years?  

More of the same. We are incredibly proud of all that we have achieved over the last 24 years but we don’t take our market leading position for granted and we’re always looking to improve and grow.  We will retain our strong customer service, company ethos and culture. I would like to grow the export part of the business, but equally I think there is still work to be done in the UK market.  We are investing heavily in our web presence across all of our brands to bring them all together under the Green-tech umbrella. We will focus on integrating our newest acquisitions FLP and look to develop our other ‘brands’. We will be investing in expanding our Green-tree topsoil business in the South of England. We will continue to support BALI and have agreed to sponsor the National Landscaping Awards for the next three years.  We are also sponsoring the Pro Landscaper 30 under 30 the next generation; to encourage those who will be the future faces of the industry. So, ambitious plans but this will get us to our strategic goal of reaching £20 million turnover in the near future.

About the firm

Green-tech supply quality landscaping materials & wholesale garden supplies to enhance, protect & improve plants & their environment.

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