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Newburgh-based steel and cladding company KR Group shortlisted for VIBES Scottish Environment Business Awards


By Kirsty Brown

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Local steel and cladding company, KR Group, has been shortlisted as a finalist for the VIBES Scottish Environment Business Awards 2022.

Once again, KR Group’s environmental achievements have been recognised on a national level.

Following a series of awards finals this year, including the CeeD Awards and Northern Star Business Awards, the team at KR Group are hopeful.

The VIBES Scottish Environment Business Awards are held each year to showcase organisations that have demonstrated significant business benefits from good environmental practice.

It is a partnership between Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), The Scottish Government, Energy Saving Trust, Highland And Islands Enterprise, Scottish Enterprise, South of Scotland Enterprise, Scottish Water, Zero Waste Scotland, and NatureScot.

The Awards are further supported by CBI Scotland, the Institute of Directors (IoD), Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), Bright Green Business, Scottish Council for Development and Industry and the Scotch Whisky Association.

In 2021, KR Group first announced their pilot scheme initiative, KR Bon Reduction, and their plans to repurpose waste composite panels that would otherwise go to landfill.

Thanks to partial funding from ERDF and Zero Waste Scotland, KR Group were able to plan for a new repurposing facility and equipment designed to strip the steel jackets from the panels and efficiently cut to size.

The build of the new facility is set to commence later this year.

In the meantime, their newly appointed Cladding Panel Separator is tasked with repurposing the panels manually.

Once the steel jackets are stripped, rigid PIR Board remains, which is perfect for insulating most spaces in domestic, commercial, and industrial structures.

This is sold in a variety of sizes via their new website.

In an industrial city such as Aberdeen, the sheer amount of construction waste generated is something KR Group have long wanted to tackle.

Aside from their primary environmental focus of cladding panels, they have also invested time into finding solutions for used safety netting and harnesses.

Nicola Fraser.
Nicola Fraser.

Over the next 5 years, KR Group’s circular economic solution to cladding waste is set to divert more than 2,650 tonnes of cladding waste from landfill and prevent 7,700 tonnes of carbon emissions, equal to removing 4,460 cars from the road.

KR Group’s project manager Ellen Delph has been at the forefront of their sustainability developments.

She said: “Following COP25, Businesses are realising the time to take sustainability seriously is now.

"Not only are moves like this essential for our planet, finding creative solutions and breaking away from bad habits can save you time and money.

"For us, launching KR Bon Reduction made a lot of business sense and naturally aligned with our growth.”

KR Group was founded in 2003 by husband-and-wife duo Kenny Robertson and Nicola Fraser.

It has since grown to service the construction industry nationally.

Despite this, they remain rooted and loyal to the north-east of Scotland.

Director Nicola said: “We are still a small, family run business.

“We’re proud of our team and how we’ve grown in the last few years, through what has been a tricky time

to navigate for most businesses.

"Despite these challenges, we’ve continued to prioritise our social and economic efforts.

"So, being recognised for that means a lot to us.

"We appreciate the opportunity and look forward to coming together with like-minded organisations.”


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