J&G Hardie Limited initially supplied the baking industry with all of its core ingredients. This photograph shows our Chairman, Fergus Hardie’s, Great Uncle Jim and his Grandfather Graeme, the founders of the business in 1924. In the 1930’s, the company was a Sales Agent for the Anchor Chemical Company who made rubber compounding chemicals. This started an involvement in the UK rubber industry and eventually led the company into plastics.
Now in its second generation of ownership, under the guidance of brothers Bonar, Hamish and Donald Hardie, the company was appointed as Agent for London based Revertex who produced synthetic rubber compounds, widely used in the textile industry. Donald led the company into the fast-growing plastic sector and was later made a Fellow of the Institute of Materials in London.
Cycolac ABS was one of the earliest engineering plastics available. Hardies were closely involved with the sale of Cycolac to Hoover for vacuum cleaners which were manufactured in Cambuslang near Glasgow and also to NCR in Dundee for cash register machines. Another major customer at that time was the Singer Sewing Machine company in Clydebank. Hardies continue to offer Cycolac ABS to our customers to this day.
Hardies continued to cut their teeth in the world of engineering polymers representing global leader GE (General Electric) Plastics, (now SABIC). An integral part of their UK sales team for many years, Hardies learnt how the materials market worked from the inside and witnessed at first hand the nuances and intricacies that enable them to see the bigger picture so well today.
Hardies also had significant success when they expanded their operations with the sales of injection moulding machines and ancillary equipment, representing market leaders Demag Hamilton, Jenco and Wittmann respectively. This gave the company a level of insight into plastics processing and the challenges of running moulding operations, beyond that of most polymer distributors and which stands it in such good stead today.
In 2007 Hardies exited the machine sales market and concentrated solely on polymer sales. This paid dividends and in 2014 following several years of steady growth and the dynamic expansion of our European supply base, the company became the first independent distributor in the UK to win the highly coveted Plastics Industry Award for ‘Polymer Distributor of the Year’. MD, Fergus Hardie was appointed President of the Scottish Plastics
& Rubber Association in 2010. In 2012 he became Vice Chairman of the Polymer Distributors and Compounder’s Group at the British Plastics Federation and in 2016, was awarded a Fellowship of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining
The Company was very pleased to announce that the existing management team of Isy Ferguson and Bartosz Komanski completed a Management Buy Out, backed by the team at Nevis Capital in Glasgow.
Fergus Hardie remains as a shareholder and Director but took a step back from day to day operations. He continues to use his industry knowledge and experience to support the team.
This deal ensured a seamless transition of control and created an exciting opportunity for the management to continue to grow the business with the backing of Nevis Capital.
With an expanded and highly knowledgeable team, Hardies are moving into their new purpose built offices, co-located with their own warehouse in Milngavie, just north of Glasgow.
After almost 100 years of trading, we have a customer base that spans the entire UK and are firmly established as the nation’s leading independent engineering polymer supplier.