Published On: Fri, Sep 16th, 2022

Steve Cross, Director of Mercury Glazing Supplies

Facts and Figures:

First job: Trainee Builders Merchant.

When did you join or set up current company: We set up Mercury in 2002 – this year is our 20th anniversary!

Most useful/favourite gadget: It has to be my phone. I once did the entire company’s weekly payroll from a camper van parked on a beach in Australia!

Favourite/most useful website: It has to be You can’t beat a bit of window shopping (excuse the pun…).

Favourite restaurant for business: Not something we normally do – unless Costa counts as a restaurant! Personally, it’s got to be Murgaritz – everyone should go once in their lives.

Business person you admire: Jeff Bezos. You have to admire the ambitiousness of his thinking – who else would think of building a shop that sells everything?

What lesson have you learnt about business over the last 12 months: It’s all been about communication. No one likes to hear bad news, but it’s better to hear it than not hear than not at all.

Best business decision: Employing our current sales office team. I can’t think there is a better or more experienced team in the country. 

Other interests: I’m a passionate fan of Gloucester Rugby, so you will often find me at Kingsholm Stadium cheering on the Cherry and Whites.  I also enjoy travel and skiing and have been lucky enough to visit some great countries.

Working Day:

I’m an early riser so I’ll often start looking at emails well before 7am. I’ll be in the office early too, so I can check the various production schedules and catch up with staff before the phones start.

From there, my day involves managing the flow through of the orders. I’ll meet with the sales office team and catch up with all departments and production heads to ensure we are meeting our KPIs across our PVC-U and aluminium manufacturing centres. 

I also make a point of meeting customers and contractors face-to-face where possible to ensure all projects are running smoothly.

Working Location:

My main base is our Gloucester headquarters and I always start my day there. I also spend time out on site as required supporting our various contracts. Many of our customers are currently working on bespoke new build sites and it’s great to see these coming together and how our products take the finish to the next level.


Mercury celebrates 20 years in business this year. The business has been through a lot in that time, but the past couple of years have easily been the most eventful.

The highs we’ve celebrated 

Despite everything, the business has had an incredible 12 months. Sales of our aluminium products saw a ten-fold increase in sales and even before the first lockdown we’d seen a step change in demand for our PVC-U vertical sliders in modern properties. This demand has only accelerated because consumers have had time to research solutions and money to spend on their homes. 

Feature-rich products are here to stay. They’ve been our bread-and-butter since day one and we’ve certainly reaped the rewards of the boom. Whether it’s PVC-U or aluminium we’re experienced in offering specialist solutions that help deliver the aspirational projects that homeowners demand, which helps to make us a very attractive fabrication partner.

We’ve also invested for the future of the business. We opened a new dedicated aluminium manufacturing centre at our headquarters in Gloucester. It means we now have dedicated facilities for both our PVC-U and aluminium production. As part of the expansion, we made a six-figure investment in automated machinery to ensure quality is second-to-none across the board. We’ve taken on new senior-level members of staff too and the Mercury family is now 60-strong and growing. 

The challenges we’ve faced

Looking back of the past, it’s fair to say there have been lots of things to be positive about. But, like for every business, the past two years have also been exceptionally challenging. 

The supply chain has been a huge issue and it looks as though it will continue to be so for some time to come. Having said that, we’re doing everything we can to mitigate the challenges for our customers. 

All our products are manufactured in the UK in our Gloucester headquarters and we are continually focussed on keeping the supply chain moving and minimise logistical challenges. 

We’ve also found, time and time again, that communication really is everything. We’re in regular contact with all our suppliers so we know exactly what’s going on. We also work closely with our customers to keep them in the loop. Everyone knows the industry is facing challenges at the moment. We’ve found that as long as we’re open and transparent, customers are incredibly understanding – we owe them a great deal of thanks for their patience and understanding. No one wants to hear bad news but it’s better to hear it than to be let down or kept in the dark. 

The future is rosy – with the right fabrication partner

As we look forward, I think it’s a mixture of good and bad again. 

The good news is that, if our order book is anything to go by, the boom is set to continue. On the other hand, I think the supply chain challenges will continue for some time to come. 

My advice to installers is to set themselves up for success. 

Work with suppliers who can help you capitalise on the opportunities. You need a supplier that offers breadth, depth and expertise. It means you can give your customers the choice and the quality they’re looking for. 

The go-to supplier of specialist, feature-rich products

If you want specialist, feature-rich products, we’re the company you need, whether you work in trade, commercial or residential markets.  And the depth and breadth of our portfolio is purposely designed to suit all applications. 

The Smart Visofold Bifold series of doors has all the design, thermal efficiency and security benefits you would expect from a highly established product. Add in impressive opening apertures and low threshold options and you have a package that’s hard to beat.

The Cortizo Aluminium Bifolding Door has up to seven leaves each way (14 in total), comes in a wealth of options and has all the durability and reliability bifold doors need. It offers an exciting solution for time-sensitive or budget-conscious projects too.

The Visoglide Plus Aluminium Patio Door offers contemporary styling, robust performance and superior thermal performance. And with the ability to accommodate larger apertures, it delivers on consumer trends for wide glass expanses too.

The Alitherm 300 Aluminium Window combines modern energy-efficient technology with the elegant and understated style of a traditional casement window.

The Alitherm Heritage 47 Aluminium Window has been engineered specifically to replace existing steel and Crittall windows without compromising on modern-day performance. 

Our aluminium sash windows have been engineered to combine the traditional aesthetics of classic British architecture with modern convenience. 

Alongside these, we offer aluminium doors and windows for commercial projects as well as aluminium lantern lights and rooflights and Smarts aluminium designer doors.

We also remain one of the UK’s largest fabricators of the market-leading PVC-U Spectus Vertical Slider. We offer both welded and mechanical jointed options, delivering the best in Vertical Slider choice for our customers.

A supplier that meets market needs

As well the products, you want a supplier who’s continually evolving their offer so it meets market needs. For example, we recently introduced the Cortizo 4700 aluminium patio door with an introductory price of just £500 per pane. As the sales figures proved, it was the product our customers wanted at a competitive industry price. 

At the same time, it’s important to value stability and resilience. Mercury was founded in 2002 and we’re celebrating our 20th anniversary this year. It’s a reassuring track record that I know our customers appreciate. 

Focusing on the future – but taking time to celebrate

We’re in the middle of a four-year plan for growth. I’m laser-focused on achieving that while continuing to maintain the customer service levels, turnaround times and quality that we’ve built our name on. 

I’ve mentioned our 20 years anniversary a number of times in this article, but it’s because I’m incredibly proud to have reached this milestone. So, as well as focusing on growth, we’ll also be taking time to celebrate this achievement and how far we’ve come. Twenty years ago we were a company of three people manufacturing one product – the Spectus PVC-U Vertical Slider. Today, we’re a multi-million-pound turnover company of 60 people manufacturing a comprehensive range of specialist feature-rich products in both PVC-U and aluminium. It has been quite a journey but one we couldn’t have done without the support of our customers or our talented team, so thank you. 

As for the future, I’m looking forward to seeing what the next 20 years bring!