JD ROBERTS Elevates Irish growth with HAI Membership

JD ROBERTS, Ireland’s oldest importer of the well-known Blue Diamond and Ultra Diamond slate ranges, has today announced its membership in the Hardware Association Ireland (HAI) for 2023.

Since its founding in 1971, JD ROBERTS has established long-term supply chain arrangements with its European suppliers and ensured repeat business through long-term relationships with clients in Ireland and the United Kingdom bolstering its reputation for providing high-performance roofing slates suitable for the harsh Irish climate, especially in the West of Ireland.

After launching a successful rebrand in the first quarter of 2022 and after more than three decades in the Irish construction industry, the innovative company now managed by the second generation of the Roberts family has joined the HAI in order to continue to leverage their growth in the Irish hardware industry.

Commenting on the new membership, Managing Director, Jack Roberts, said, ” Builders’ merchants have always been one of our key expansion areas in Ireland. Joining the HAI gives us the chance to network with members of the hardware industry across the entirety of Ireland and to learn how we may grow our product offering to meet the needs of their consumers and how to effectively advertise to them the benefits of utilising Ireland’s oldest slate. My late father founded JD ROBERTS in Ireland, and we will continue to expand on the reputation he earned over many decades.”.

JD ROBERTS will gain a substantial amount of knowledge and insight from the Hardware Association of Ireland, which will allow them to improve workflow efficiencies and overall operational capabilities by utilising the available member resources. Jack and his will be able to obtain advice and support in a variety of areas, including credit management, debt collection, business insurance, and family business support, all provided by industry experts with sector-specific experience.

The Hardware Association International (HAI) advocates for the best interests of the hardware industry by representing its demands, particularly with regard to illicit trade in solid fuels, tax implications for enterprises, and rural company survival incentives.

Our Rebrand: An Interview with Managing Director, Jack Roberts

After three decades of successfully importing and selling the high-performance roofing products, Blue Diamond, Blue Diamond 3000, and Ultra Diamond slates to the Irish construction industry, we spoke with Managing Director, Jack Roberts, about the JD ROBERTS rebrand and what the process involved for the company.

Jack, why did you rebrand?

After more than 30 years in the market, we needed to build a strong brand identification and update the look and feel of the business. Over the past three decades, our organisation has undergone major changes in terms of what we offer, who we work with, how we work, and when and when we do it.

Those of you who knew my father, John, may recall that he founded JD ROBERTS in 1971 and was the first person in Ireland to obtain an importers license, allowing him to import Europe’s leading slate goods directly from Germany. It was crucial to us that our father was at the forefront of this process and that what he established based in the ’70s was reflected in the rebranding, so that we could carry his legacy to the maximum extent and, most importantly, make him proud.

My father was such a family-oriented and customer-focused individual; he loved meeting new people and was well-known by all. It was essential that this was not lost in the process and that we incorporated his core principles into each new phase, ensuring that they would live on into the next generation of our family.

We had simply outgrown our previous brand and required a professional, polished appearance that would withstand the test of time and be in line with industry competitors. We needed a brand that would be readily recognisable as both a product and a well-known name from my father’s legacy. The time had come. Time for a change, and for an identity that more accurately reflects who we are now and in the future. We are confident that he would be pleased and that he would have enjoyed seeing how things have evolved.

When did the rebrand take effect?

The JD ROBERTS rebrand was launched at the start of September 2022 and has been shared with all our suppliers and clients so they can follow our new journey.

What did the rebranding process involve Jack?

Our rebrand was a long and arduous process. It has involved a completely new look and feel, including a new logo, tag line, and colors, examining what our business is about, and developing our core values and mission statement, which was developed in part with our father in mind, a new suite of marketing collateral from brochures, business cards, and letterhead to a full new interactive, customer-centric website where our clients can get all the information they need.

It has also necessitated a substantial investment in our digital presence, something we had never done previously but felt was essential if we were to remain competitive in this industry. Everyone is online, from websites to social media platforms, therefore we anticipated that this would play an important role in the process.

Although it has been a difficult process, it is astounding to watch the hard work, effort, and money finally pay off!

Will the rebrand affect your products?

Our core business will continue to remain the same, stocking the same high-performance products as always.

Our aim is not to change the products we offer but to take them to the next level – to push the boundaries of what’s possible with them – and to also improve our service offering to clients and our suppliers across Ireland who have been integral to the growth of our business over the last 30+ years since our dad set it up.

We really want the end users to start to understand the value of our slates, something John was so passionate about. Our goal over the next 12 months is to have customers across Ireland going into hardware stores and merchants and requesting that they stock the JD ROBERTS product lines, to us that would be a success.

What can we expect to see from JD ROBERTS over the next 12 months?

Over the next 12 months, you will observe the expansion of our new brand and digital presence. We will expand our database of JD ROBERTS stockists throughout Ireland and have plans to bring new product lines to our portfolio as well.

As a business, we are fully committed to our environmental and sustainability initiatives, which we will be further developing with our suppliers and clients over the next 12 to 18 months. We are also looking to increase our employee base with several new hires planned for early 2023.

This rebranding, we believe, will continue to position JD ROBERTS as Ireland’s longest supplier of leading slate roofing products to the Irish construction industry. We are energised and excited about the future, and for what’s to come and we want to continue developing the reputation our dad Jack built and ensure that our customers continue to be the focal point of our business operations going forward.



JD ROBERTS Launches Rebrand

[Dublin, Ireland, 1st August 2022] JD ROBERTS, the oldest importer in Ireland, has unveiled its rebranding after more than three decades in the Irish construction industry.

JD ROBERTS imports the world’s oldest slates, known as Blue Diamond and Ultra Diamond Slates, which are predominantly used in the west of Ireland on residential projects due to their unique finish and durability in the harsh Irish climate.

The rebranding occurs at a pivotal moment in the company’s growth, which is now managed by the second generation of the Roberts family, Jack Roberts, and sister Angelique O’Connell.

The rebranding is the first of its kind for the long-standing importer, which was founded more than 30 years ago. Adopting a research-based strategy, the rebranding began in early 2022, which included interviewing clients, partners, and suppliers as well as analysing user journeys to create a brand that would resonate with both existing and new customers.

As a result, the rebranding comprises three essential components:

  • A new brand identity, image, and visual system
  • A new website and digital experience for JD ROBERTS customers
  • A new strategy for marketing the Blue Diamond and Ultra Diamond products to builder merchants and end users across Ireland.

“This has been an extraordinary internal effort, and I am confident that it will not only serve as a significant catalyst for change but also propel us and our partners well beyond 2022. The rebrand is also a mark of our growth over the last 30 years and a new identity that we hope will resonate with people going forward, as much as the old one did because of the work of my father” added Jack Roberts, Managing Director.

Continuing Jack added “We have partnered with our suppliers for over 30 years and have developed long-lasting, secure relationships with them, which has resulted in the continued growth of our product. We hope to build on this and introduce new product lines over the next 30 years to continue this success.