Semperfli delivers what its customers need… and more

UK-based fly tying materials manufacturer Semperfli has always gone the extra mile for its customers. TTW finds out why the company is one step ahead of the game when it comes to supplying products and helping dealers sell it.

Semperfli has enjoyed another hugely successful year, from hugely impressive growth to gaining key distributors in more countries to picking up a prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise: International Trade – a highly-respected UK honour signifying major achievements in export.

One of the reasons is that its customer service delivers on all fronts, from stock and speedy deliveries to a fool-proof ordering system and an exclusive approach to helping its distributors and retailers manage their product lines and sales quickly and easily.

Co-founder Andy Kitchener explained: “We were already doing well through 2021 and into 2022 but exhibiting at the International Fly Tackle Dealer Show in the USA in March introduced us to more multiples and more independents, effectively more than doubling our dealer database at a stroke.

“What we kept hearing from everyone who visited us was how much they appreciated that, manufacturing the products ourselves, we always had stock, can deliver quickly and we always supported them.

“In fact, from a manufacturing perspective, we have moved from a one-shift to a two-shift system, which has doubled our capacity. On top of that, we have just ordered the same number of machines as we already have, again quadrupling our capacity , while also constantly making improvements to the products we make.

“For example, our new tensioning system means we have zero breaks on product spooling and that translates into a four-fold increase in the manufacture of items like wires and finer materials.

“This increased capacity means we are now capable of producing tens of millions of spools and cards per year – more than enough to keep our customers supplied.

“In addition, we have also vastly increased our packaging team and this further boosts our strengths in the final manual packaging and in our quality assurance processes.”


Customer care

Indeed, quality assurance is one of the four cornerstones of Semperfli, alongside innovation, customer service and passion for both the products and the industry at large.

And these are vital to its continued business, especially as demand continues to grow. It’s an interesting cycle – these cornerstones are the reasons for Semperfli’s success but also the way it continues to handle the increasing level of orders and customers all across the world.

(Although Andy also pointed out that, given the current climate, it has suspended its Pro Team and shipments to Russia, despite continued demand.)

That and the fact it is currently negotiating a new facility, which will double its manufacturing and office space.

One of the things you will hear constantly from Semperfli customers is the high and comprehensive level of service.

Co-founder Ann Kitchener revealed: “We have a dedicated salesforce that actually pick up the phone, visit customers or go on Zoom to keep in constant communication with them. We have great relationships with them and we often make recommendations or talk through how to make the most from their dealerships.

“We will often do live demonstrations, either in situ or via Zoom, covering training, fly tying demonstrations and even full question and answers sessions – we did two particularly successful ones in South Africa for two different clubs, which had been organised by our distributor there.

“We also attend shows and exhibitions alongside our partners to help them, too.

“Crucially, we have a full B2B account for every partner, no matter their size and this is available to them 24/7, along with a manged service if that’s easier. Either way, there is a whole host of resources available.”

This B2B account allows dealers and distributors to place orders online or via a full CSV upload, they can access a full library of product images for their websites, download pricing documents and access EPOS and data feeds – all available as standard to every partner.


Going global

One of the big issues with dealing with so many countries is keeping manufacturers and customers’ stock and computer systems talking the same product language.

Semperfli uses the globally recognised Electronic Data Interchange or EDI, a worldwide standard which allows documents and information sent from one system to be recognised and read by another, whether that is purchase orders, acknowledgements or other details which make the supply chain work.

Andy explained: “if we have a large order to send to, say, a distributor, we have to place boxes within boxes, which need to be labelled up so the warehouse operatives know when they unpack them where they go on which shelves.

“The advance shipping notice explains what is in each one and how they are packed. So the barcoded boxes can be scanned on arrival and the products allocated to where they need to be, quickly and easily.

“It is a massive deal and most of our competitors do not do this, which is why ordering from us is so straightforward.”

Another key component is the firm’s ‘onboarding’ guide, which details to dealers all of the facilities available and how to access them.

Andy added: “In a modern shop, they will likely be using an EPOS system for example, which probably means they need to allocate each item to their inventory and then will require information and images to upload to their website.”

“We provide it all. As a result, we can literally get a new partner up and running with our products in just one day, even if they are stocking thousands of items. The EDI feeds also mean all of the information can go directly into their system.”


Making it easy

Being strictly trade-only, Semperfli can focus on what its distributors and dealers really need. It will even pass over any end-used enquiries to a local partner to handle.

Ann continued: “In Europe, one of the biggest things for us is that, since we manufacture our own materials in our own factory here, they qualify for shipping under the free-trade agreement. This makes it very easy for everyone, even after Brexit.

“And, naturally, since we make everything here in the UK, there are no supply issues from overseas so everything is in stock and ready to order.”

Semperfli’s attention to detail also extends to its packaging. Every item is barcoded with its content and pricing while each has a Euro slot to hang on a dealer’s wall.

But this goes further – all of the packaging is either reusable, recyclable or made from recycled materials, while items are packed in such a way to make them weigh less, reducing the carbon footprint as more items can be shipped in a smaller space.

Products themselves also feature information in both metric and imperial measurements on each label plus branding, barcodes and other details while the labels themselves are waterproof, minimising the risk of them detaching while on the shelf.

Ann concluded: “Attention to detail is everything and we believe our approach is different from everyone else out there.

“Put simply, we care more, we offer a better product and provide a better service.”


Semperfli currently has partners in the following countries:

  • Argentina
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • Columbia
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Kenya
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Malaysia
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • Serbia
  • Slovenia
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • Sri Lanka
  • Sweden
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Switzerland
  • UK
  • USA