ASH Display Solutions make products look amazing thanks to PLEXIGLAS®
“With this many potential customers, you really need to stand out. That’s where we come in.” This slogan vividly describes the ambition of point of sales specialist ASH Display Solutions. In a history going back almost 40 years, the Wolverhampton company has moved from focusing on acrylic sheets to being a full-service provider of extraordinary retail displays – always using new materials. Thanks to the PLEXIGLAS® B2B online shop, these now include the brand acrylic glass made in Germany.
“The PLEXIGLAS® brand is relatively new to us. It was the shop that opened up the world of PLEXIGLAS® to us,” says David Archer, who runs ASH together with his brother James and whose roles includes material procurement. “Its high quality and versatility make PLEXIGLAS® an exciting material for us.” ASH are always on the hunt for suitable materials. “We are constantly coming up with new ideas on how to create retail displays that provide the right setting for the products and look great themselves,” explains David. ASH relies on a wide range of materials to achieve this, with the focus being primarily on plastics. “Plastics have always fascinated me, as they are constantly developing with new surfaces or properties that allow us to create new products,” says David.
Much like David’s favourite material, ASH too has undergone constant development since being founded in 1982. His father, Robert Archer, founded the company with two business partners based on his experience at the family-owned sign and engraving company – initially as stockholders for acrylic sheet, then with a strong market presence in sunbeds, and finally taking the step into production in 1987. “The company started out with very limited technical capabilities – just a flatbed saw, a pin router and home-made heaters,” says David, who, like his brother, joined the family business straight out of school. New machines were added over the years, enabling greater capacity, more exact cuts and higher quality prints.
Aiming for a high-quality result
“Our strategy is based on continual investment in plant, resources and training, in order to deliver high-quality results to our customers,” emphasizes David Archer. Today, ASH mainly focuses on point of sale products, primarily those made from plastic. “Our USP is high quality, value engineered manufacturing: We offer our customers a complete package, from the initial briefing to the delivery of the finished product,” says David. This strategy has proved successful for ASH in Great Britain with many well-known customers from various different sectors, such as the airline British Airways, the supermarket chain Tesco and the Jewellery brand Thomas Sabo.
To achieve these quality standards, ASH relies on materials that make high-quality designs possible in the first place, such as PLEXIGLAS®. “We have many projects that require the accuracy that PLEXIGLAS® enables,” explains James Archer, who is mainly responsible for production. Extruded PLEXIGLAS® has an excellent thickness tolerance and can be processed very accurately – two important factors when materials are connected with notches. “With PLEXIGLAS® we can rely on the material really being 3 mm thick, which is not the case with many other materials,” says James. Sometimes there are tolerances of up to 0.3 mm. “Although that is a small amount, it makes a large difference to the fit of the product. And to make changes to hundreds of parts would be very time consuming,” emphasizes James Archer. “Using high-quality materials is the only way for us to design and produce high-quality products at realistic costs.”