Published On: Tue, Feb 25th, 2020

Vesa Nenye, Head of Customers and Markets UK & Ireland at Roto

First Job: Started my own chain of Games/Toy stores in Finland.
When did you first join Roto: Having led many multinational sales teams, providing products to virtually all the major retailers on the high street, Roto lured me to the glazing industry in October 2015.
Most Useful/favourite Gadget: I use my iPhones incessantly. I love drawing with the new iPad Pro but don’t seem to find enough time for this. Maybe this is because it is also a great platform for playing the odd game or watching a movie or two!
Favourite/most useful website: Roto has the most amazing online learning platform covering a multitude of topics from the latest hardware to EU cartel law.
Business person you admire: Any entrepreneur who has made their business grow while still being good to their staff and finding the resources to help the local community.
Recommended hotel for business: I travel frequently all over the UK and Europe and tend to stay in whichever hotel best meets the needs of the trip. is a great help. One of our regular favourites in the UK is the Golden Lion in Easenhall, near Rugby. It is close to both the M1 and M6 and is a great rustic location for small team meetings.
Favourite UK restaurant: I like dining in new restaurants, from local dives to the Michelin star places. Recently, my 5 year old daughter has become obsessed with Sushi so currently anywhere with a conveyer belt gets our family’s vote.
Best business decisions: Developing the team we now have at Roto UK via recruitment and training.
Other interests: I play several games competitively. I am also very interested in military history and have published two books on Finland’s role in the Second World War.

Working Week: Things move quickly at Roto and for me no working week
is quite the same as the last. With a lot of travel involved, I don’t always have a regular getting up time. It is either early or very early! In the last week I was hosting a best practice trip for some of our key clients at a production site in Europe. I hold frequent strategy sessions with our distribution partners and coordinate product development workshops with fabricators or system houses. The rest of the time goes into coaching our team and in video conferences with our international colleagues. Like everyone else at Roto, I am encouraged to partake in a couple of hours online product training each week to go along with the German lessons I am currently taking.

Working Location: My residence is a converted church in Derbyshire, so a slightly unusual location for my home office! For sales meetings we like to mix it up a bit and use various venues. A number of times a year we will get together at Roto Western Europe headquarters in Belgium and we often take clients on factory visits to Roto production sites in countries like Germany, Austria and Hungary.

The Interview

One thing that attracted me to Roto is the company culture. The entire team is very open and friendly. Our UK key account and area managers work closely with colleagues from our Western Europe region and the wider Roto Group. With a group employing more than 4,500 staff you could imagine there to be a strict hierarchy, but the senior management are very approachable and thanks to our decentralized structure, collaboration between different functions and offices works seamlessly. I think this positive vibe comes across to our customers and this sense of family is one of the reasons they remain loyal to us. Of course, another key factor in clients sticking with Roto is the superior quality and reliability of our products and service. It goes without saying that when you invest in a premium brand, you naturally expect to get the longer-term benefits that come with that: strong delivery performance, far fewer problems, expert support and advice, etc. From Roto, you also get genuine innovation and products with unique advantages that really do lead the way.

Take for example Tilt&Turn. Most people in the industry know that this has long been an important area for Roto. We don’t stand still and continue to maintain the reputation for being first to market. The latest example of that is Tilt-Safe. It is a given that Tilt&Turn windows can achieve high levels of security, but a tilted open window is normally vulnerable to attack. At least, that was the case until we developed Tilt-Safe. Like many clever ideas, it is very simple. Basically, three specially-designed high security components act as stay retainers giving complete security even when the window is left open in the tilt mode. The system is so robust that windows with Tilt-Safe have passed the EN burglary test to Resistance Class 2 when tilted open.
Another area in which Roto has innovated a world-beating range of products is sliding doors. We can cover a very wide range of installations in very big sizes, and the most talked about item right now is Patio Inowa. Again, a unique design feature puts us ahead of the competition. Patio Inowa allows for a continuous circumferential gasket, and the way the sash closes means there are locking and compression points on all four sides. This results in levels of air and water performance that are just astonishing. We have had installations resist pressures of 1600 Pascals for over 75 minutes.

Patio Inowa has been used on many prestigious projects. It featured in the recent expansion to Canary Wharf, with installations from Wicona and Schüco. This helped us get nominated in the London Construction Awards 2018. We were finalists for both the Sustainable Construction Award and the London Build Excellence Award. The list does not end there. At the moment in the UK we are getting a lot of interest in our range of electronic and mechanical Tandeo door locks. This is a perfect solution for composite door manufacturers as the lock secures itself against intruders without the homeowner having to remember to turn the key. Meanwhile aluminium profiles have benefitted from the introduction of the Solid C7, a completely concealed door hinge. It has full 3D adjustment and is also fast to manufacture because it significantly simplifies installation of the completed door. Roto invests tens of millions every year into research and development, so you can expect to see more original, market-leading products in the near future. Most recently our development teams have gone beyond the requirements of any existing standards and developed the RotoSil Level 6 surface coating. This superior technology is designed to protect parts like rivets that are not covered by current tests, and to withstand extremes of temperature and humidity. You could say it is making our hardware future-proof as well as corrosion proof. Over the course of the next year or so, all of our coated products will have this surface finish.

We collaborate closely with other Roto Group companies such as DEVENTER, the leading brand for weatherseals. This means our clients not only get the best hardware but can also have the best sealing products working in conjunction in order to maximise performance and longevity of windows. It is our aim to help our customers develop complete window and door solutions with superior performance and unique selling points which will help to grow their business. Aside from products, a compelling reason to work with Roto is that we become a true partner. Our customers benefit from a large portfolio of aftercare and improvement services such as product training and lean production consulting, where we help manufacturers make their processes more efficient. With some of our own window fabrication sites winning awards as world’s best factories we have a lot of expertise to share. We firmly believe that if we can help develop our customers’ operations further they will remain with us. Our constant goal for the UK is double digit growth. Over the last four years we have succeeded in doubling our turnover and we continue to gain market share. Right now, a lot of my time has been taken up in recruiting new team members for the UK and Ireland. What I would say to fabricators is come and join with us: we know we can make a transformational difference to your business in so many ways.