United Tools pulls together for Fiji

It wasn’t all just grass skirts and late night kava sessions when United Tools held its annual conference and AGM on Denarau Island in Fiji. Delegates were also able to lend a hand to the local community.

Hitachi Booth

Stuart Clark, CEO of United Tools, presents the prinicpal of the Mulomulo Public School with a donation for computer monitors

The United Tools 2013 Conference and Annual General Meeting was held in Fiji through the middle of October. The event was attended by 85 del- egates from the United Tools network and 40 delegates representing suppliers across 21 supporting brands.

The theme of this year’s event was “Partnering for Success” and United Tools unveiled its plans for the achievement of its immediate and long term business objectives. The event schedule was jam- packed with a trade show, conferencing sessions, dinners, and a group activity which involved working within local com- munities in need. In between all of this, many took the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful tropi- cal surrounds that the island setting had to offer.

Einhell’s Christopher O’Neil (left) with United Tools CEO Stuart Clark during the Supplier of The Year Award presentation

The team from Milwaukee accepts its Supplier of the Year award from United Tools CEO Stuart Clark (centre)

A key announcement at this year’s event that had everyone excited was the release of a new look for the United Tools brand. The new livery includes a co-branded ele- ment to ensure that customers understand the relationship between the United Tools’ members and the brand itself. This will be integrated into all customer-facing facets and activities of the United Tools store network over the coming months and whilst elements of the brand’s heritage have been retained, the transformation includes new features such as an icon and an all-important co-branding bar.

A team of delegates gets busy with their challenge to help a local school in Fiji

This year’s conference also included an activity that enabled all attendees to immerse themselves in the local culture with a sense of purpose. The competitive flare of all delegates became apparent when delegates were split up into eight separate teams and then given a list of challenges that they needed to complete. These challenges began with decorating the bus which was to be their transport for the activity. Once the navigation and negotiations of the local markets was completed, all of the teams headed to a local village where the purpose of the activity was truly defined. In the space of 90 minutes, the delegates of the United Tools Conference transformed a local and much-underfunded primary school. The tasks included painting, construction of seating areas, and rubbish bins. The activity was then capped off with a donation from United Tools for some much needed computer monitors.

Stuart Clark, CEO of United Tools, shares the stage with students of the Mulomulo Public School

Perspective was achieved for all confer- ence delegates when the school principal announced that it would have taken three years to raise the funds to complete what had just been achieved. The activity also included a visit to another school in a neighbouring village where a further donation was made. With many United Tools members and supplier delegates inspired by the charitable theme of the activity, further personal and corporate donations have since followed, which will greatly assist the local community in Fiji.

Event: United Tools Annual Conference
Venue: Westin – Denarau Island, Fiji
Dates: October 17 to 19, 2013

“The main objective of the activity was to bring our del- egates together for a common purpose, Stuart Clark, CEO of United Tools said. “This has been achieved and it was great to see everyone roll their sleeves up and do their best to help the local community of Fiji. Above everything that our activity has achieved is the overwhelming sense of contribution that has resulted from the work and donations. There is a very healthy element of charity evident across our delegates who have all been inspired by how our Fijian hosts maintain such a joyous attitude to life while not having many of the basic possessions that most of us take for granted.

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The trade exhibition saw all 21 supporting suppliers meeting with United Tools members in authentic tropical booths

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The trade exhibition saw all 21 supporting suppliers meeting with United Tools members in authentic tropical booths

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Delegates hard at work, helping a local school in Fiji

United Tools also announced the
winners of its annual “Supplier of The “Year” award. Suppliers are assessed in
two separate categories and this year trophies were presented to the teams at
Milwaukee (for the second consecutive
year) and Einhell.

One of eight teams from the group activity returns to reflect on a great day