The Governing Boards of the Timber Trade Federation (TTF) and the Timber Research and Development Association (TRADA) have announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to align the strategies and activities of each organisation with a view toward a merger of the two organisations.
The MoU was signed on 6 October 2020 and work has begun to conduct due diligence on both parties and propose a new operating structure for the merged organisations.
Commenting on the signing, David Hopkins, Chief Executive of the Timber Trade Federation, said: “This is a strong positive step for both our organisations and for the timber market in the UK. It has been fragmented for far too long. This will allow us to build a single supply chain organisation representing all points from sawmill to importer to manufacturers through to designer, specifier and contractor. It will give timber a much more powerful voice in the market and at a political level, while enhancing services for members. The past year has been tough for everyone in our sector, but this announcement makes the future look far more positive.”
Nick Milestone, Chair of TRADA, said: “This is an historic step forward for timber in the UK. Bringing the two oldest, biggest names in timber together like this can only be good news. It will combine the lobbying and communications power of the TTF with the technical know-how, insight and design guidance from TRADA to make timber the first-choice product for designers across the country. I’m looking forward to working with Dave and other colleagues to make this a success from day one.”
The two organisations will continue to run operations in parallel under a common management plan for at least the first year before starting to merge activities, ensuring that no aspect of current member services is neglected or lost from either. BM TRADA, which has run TRADA’s operations under a contract arrangement for the last 25 years, is in discussions with the two organisations regarding the role that it will perform under the new arrangement proposed.
Further progress towards these common goals will be announced in due course.