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Gira System Integrator Partner Program now live in UK!

Gira, one of the world’s leading full-range suppliers of intelligent system solutions for building management, is pleased to announce its new System Integrator Partner Program [SIPP] has ten verified UK affiliates.
The driving force behind the concept of the Partnership Program is to share best practice to enable Integrators to bring customers’ visions to life. System integrators benefit from exclusive online training in the latest Gira products, a technical hotline and access to the Gira AppShop. In contrast, the end user benefits from the peace of mind knowing that a recognized professional, aligned with a leading global company, is working on their project.
Partners of this exclusive program are established experts who have completed hundreds of smart home installations. Also, Gira trained and certified, each one of these members benefit from ongoing training programs and professional development to maintain their professional offering, as well as provide significant business advantages.
Mark Booth, Managing Director, Gira UK says “We are proud that the UK’s leading System Integrators are on board with Gira’s new UK Partner Program [SIPP] and we look forward to welcoming and assessing future partners to help them offer their customers an elevated level of service and expertise. To be able to offer hands-on support via a new online portal made-up of independent integrator profiles vetted by Gira and Gira recommended is a great prospect for smart specification in the UK. We offer the world’s largest range of data connection technology and smart solutions across our range of designer sockets and switches: ensuring that we can meet challenging market requirements now and long into the future.”
Gira appointed System Integrators have in-depth knowledge and expertise in consulting, project planning and commissioning IP (Internet Protocol) products for building control technology, like the Gira HomeServer or GiraX1 and G1 Control panel. These solutions provide technical support and optimise the functionality of smart homes, particularly when it comes to connecting products from various manufacturers, in multi-room and telephony projects.
As dedicated service providers or in-house service providers at installation companies, Gira’s System Integrators are well-placed to work with and also retrofit KNX processing electrical systems: the first generation of home automation systems.
Gira’s market-leading Partnership Program has been up and running for 14 years and boasts 251 System Integrators worldwide, with interest growing all the time. To date there are 176 partners in Germany, 27 in the Netherlands, 13 in Austria, 11 in Denmark, 11 in Sweden, 2 in Finland, 1 in Italy and now 10 in the UK.
The System Integrator Conference 2019 took place in Radevormwald and Duesseldorf from 7th -9th May, it included two days packed with systems training and hands-on learning, a visit to the construction site of the new Gira building and dinner at a typical German restaurant, Brauhaus Wuppertal.


Despite a Strong Rise in Searches Two Fifths of Digging Work is Still Putting UK Underground Infrastructure at Risk

A record 62% of all UK excavation work is now preceded by a thorough search for underground assets, such as pipes and cables, according to Digging Up Britain 2019. The report by LSBUD (Linesearch BeforeUdig) shows that there were 2,585,862 searches made through its portal last year – a 14% increase on the previous year. As a result, almost a quarter of a million potential strikes were averted.
Despite the promising increases, the report by LSBUD, which provides a free to use online safe digging facility, suggests that more than 1.5 million projects out of an estimated total of 4 million still took place last year without a detailed search for underground assets being completed. This equates to 38%, or a dig every 21 seconds.
Richard Broome, Managing Director of LSBUD, comments: “It is fantastic to see such a significant increase in searches over the last year – with construction workers, subcontractors and the public all much more aware that they need to check for any pipes or cables that may be present before they put a spade in the ground. That said, it’s a worry that nearly four in ten projects are still taking place without proper searches being completed – leaving the UK’s utility infrastructure at risk.”
The report, which analyses the 2.5 million searches made during 2018 on LSBUD’s portal, also provides a fascinating insight into the sectors which did the most digging, and the type of projects involved. Telecoms topped the list for a second year in a row. Telecoms contractors and operators completed 881,000 searches, making up 34% of all searches in 2018 (1% down on the previous year). Water related information requests came next, with 574,000 searches, accounting for 22% of the total.
In addition to sector specific information, the report also captures the type of work which is taking place. It is perhaps no surprise that over 2 million enquiries (79% of all searches) related to utility works, but within this overall figure there were some interesting trends. There was a 10% increase in telecoms related work, while the number of searches for utility projects that involved Horizontal Directional Drilling more than doubled in 2018. There were almost twice as many requests for BT manhole cover and frame projects.
Work by contractors on the nation’s roads also grew by 18%, with 360,000 requests submitted in 2018. Housing grew its share of excavation work with a 21% surge in searches from firms involved in housebuilding. Solar farm project searches leapt by 64%, tree planting enquiries more than doubled, mining and quarry projects increased by 43% while searches relating to agricultural works increased by 86%.
According to the LSBUD report, emergency enquiries increased by 88% over the last year. If these figures are indicative of what is happening nationally, of the 4 million jobs completed, 216,000 of them were emergency related.
Richard Broome adds: “This spike in emergency projects is worrying. If a utility company hasn’t registered its assets on our portal, the firm doing the digging will need to deal with the asset owner directly and that can take up to 28 days. This timescale does not fit with the urgency of an ‘emergency’ – so corners may be cut, assumptions made, and assets struck due to the need to fix whatever is causing the emergency.”
LSBUD’s report bears this out, suggesting a strong correlation between the severity of a strike and the nature of work being carried out – incidents are twice as likely to occur on jobs that are medium or high risk than they are on planned work.
Richard Broome concludes: “This is why we urge asset owners to register with our service; with more emergency works than ever taking place, and more people searching than ever before, for every type of project, it’s crucial to make it easy for firms to rapidly check what’s under the ground.”
According to the report, of the UK’s 1.5 million kilometres of underground utility infrastructure, about 800,000 is currently covered by LSBUD’s collaborative portal; this is a 23% increase on last year but still leaves 50% exposed to the risk of strikes. The water sector is the most vulnerable, with only a limited number of companies making their asset information centrally available.


London Executive Offices (LEO) relaunches as The Argyll Club and unveils range of new business memberships

Plan to double the size of the business in next 5 years, beginning with an eight-figure investment in its current portfolio
London Executive Offices (LEO) is relaunching as The Argyll Club and unveiling a suite of new business memberships, which will provide busy professionals exclusive access to a host of its business clubs across London.
A well-respected player in the London office market for over 20 years, The Argyll Club is embarking upon the next stage of its evolution and plans to double its size in just five years. The ambitious growth plan will be achieved by extending its range of services, expanding both its owned and leased real estate, and partnering with some of London’s most prestigious landlords.
As part of the initiative, the business is investing an eight-figure sum to upgrade its existing portfolio, including restoration work on one of Mayfair’s very few Grade 1 listed office buildings. With addresses such as 1 Cornhill, 33 St James’s Square and 78-79 Pall Mall, The Argyll Club boasts a 38-strong portfolio of some of the most interesting and impressive buildings in London.
Beth Hampson, Commercial Director comments: “As a business we have evolved and we now offer everything from premium offices to elegant lounges and delightful meeting spaces, all delivered with concierge service. The quality of both the environment and service we provide is much more akin to a members’ club and we wanted our name to reflect that.”
The new Portfolio Membership provides access to seven of London’s finest locations, from Mayfair to the City, with discreet lounges, hot-desking facilities and business concierge services. They are designed for both existing members who want additional flexible space to complement their existing office network, and new members who want access to premium working environments and business support services but don’t necessarily need permanent office space.
From today, Members can also access an array of updated digital services, including a new website, app, online booking system and customer portal. These will streamline the member experience, making it easier to book meeting rooms across London. Functionality will increase as a host of new features come online over the next 12 months.
Conal O’Hara, Chief Operating Officer concludes: “The way we all work is changing and the office environments we use need to reflect that. Our new memberships provide a fresh way for individuals to access the calm, professional, grown-up business spaces we’ve become known for. Flexible workspace currently accounts for around 6.3% of office space in London[1]. We expect that figure to grow significantly. Our marriage of prime locations and concierge service is unlike anything else in the market and we’re well placed to meet the ever-increasing demand for sophisticated working environments.”

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