The European Federation of Associations of Locks & Builders Hardware Manufacturers




Held in Le Touquet Paris-Plage, this year’s annual ARGE Conference heralded the success of its EPD programme and looked toward shaping the future ARGE agenda.

Hosted by UNIQ, the association of the lock and fittings manufacturers in France, at the picturesque seaside resort in the Picardy, Northern France, the annual gathering was attended by over 60 delegates, exceeding previous turnouts.

The conference celebrated the success of its two-year EPD project with the Institute for Construction and Environment presenting eight of the 14 planned industry representative EPDs, which are valid throughout Europe.

Presented to the ARGE Executive Board by Frank Grootens, the authorised representative of IBU from Berlin, the published EPDs cover; door closers, sliding door gears, locks, lock cylinders, panic exit devices, door and window handles, hinges and window fittings. All 14 EPDs are expected to be available by the end of November, with letterboxes and shutter hardware devices anticipated to be the next published EPDs.

In addition to marking the achievements of the EPD project, the 64th annual ARGE Conference was all about looking toward the future. Setting the agenda and agreeing the future strategic priorities was a key objective at this year’s event and one, which all delegates were actively involved with.

Workshops were set up to facilitate and stimulate these discussions. These groups focused on the future direction of standard developments, security requirements for the administration of Master Key Systems, creating a recognised European quality brand and the application of standards covering smart homes, connected devices and elmech technologies. Working Groups have now been created, whose task it is set objectives and define appropriate actions around these issues.

Commenting on this year’s conference, Hans Weissenbock, ARGE Chairman, said: “The attendance at this year’s event was very pleasing, showing that members are keen to have their say on the future ARGE agenda and the issues we should be advocating for as a representative for the lock and hardware industry. Whilst there was consensus that ARGE should utilise its leading position as an umbrella association to speak with a strong voice to CEN and the Standards Commission, it was great to see members actively engaged with other campaigning topics. The lively debate and thoughtful observations around the four workshops ensures that the next programme of work undertaken by ARGE will be as successful as the EPD project.”

This year’s conference also included presentations from Oussamar Ammar, who captivated the audience with his humorous take on the substantial changes in the relationship between manufacturers and customers, and the altered purchasing patterns in a world of IT and global networking. Delegates were also treated to a tour of Deny Security in Saint Blimont, where they could witness first hand the high quality manufacturing processes.

The 2017 ARGE Conference will be hosted by FMMGI from Austria, taking place from 14th to 15th September in Salzburg.

To download the presentations and workshop resources from this year's conference, visit the download section