New Group MD appointed as Style celebrates 25 years in business


At a party to celebrate Style’s 25th year in business, co-founder and Group managing director, Julian Sargent, handed over the baton to new Group MD, Michael Porter, who will lead the business into the years ahead; Julian now becoming chairman.

Style first opened its doors for business in April 1999, and rapidly established itself as the clear market leader in the moveable walls sector.

Forging an early partnership with global moveable wall manufacturer, Dorma Huppe, and being the company that first brought Skyfold into the UK market, Style quickly became known for offering the most extensive portfolio of moveable, folding and sliding walls in the market.

Whilst becoming the number one choice for creating adaptable space in the boardrooms of global brands, sub-dividing major lecture theatres in Universities, and giving hotels the ability to host multiple concurrent events, Style also installed simple folding walls in village halls and primary schools, providing a genuine solution for all requirements and budgets. The company even celebrated installing, what was believed to be, the largest moveable wall in Europe at London’s ExCel arena.

Bringing innovation into the new build and refurb sector, Style broke the mould of the traditional, manual folding wall, introducing highly innovative automated solutions thanks to its exclusive UK partnership with Dorma Huppe, Skyfold and SWG.

This enabled Style to deliver flexible room solutions to multiple sectors, including corporate, hospitality, education, healthcare, local authority, religion and retail.

In the course of 25 years, Style has repeatedly proven why it is market leader, winning 18 coveted FIS Contractors awards, 13 of which were gold and 5 silver. Not just relying on outstanding products, the company continued to inwardly invest in its people, technology and processes.

After opening its first office in the south of England, it quickly established a UK-wide presence with locations in the North of England, followed by the Midlands, then Scotland.

By 2011, Style was leading the industry by achieving the ISO 9001 Quality standard, ISO14001 Environmental ISO 18001(now 45001), and Health & Safety; still remaining in scope for all three standards and continuing to lead the way today.

2012 saw the launch of its moveable wall service and aftercare solution, providing a national team of highly qualified technicians to provide preventative maintenance and emergency repairs to all types of moveable walls; not just those installed by Style.

In 2013, Style led the way with sustainability becoming the first ever UK supplier of EPD certified moveable walls. The EPD (Environmental Product Declaration) is the pinnacle of product sustainability and of importance to anyone seeking sustainable solutions for BREEAM, LEED and SKA rating certification.

In 2014, the company opened its London showroom, where architects, contractors and end-user customers could see a wide range of moveable walls in situ, as well as experience a range of acoustic ratings, stacking options, methods of operation and finishes. Five years later, Style moved to even more impressive premises in London to open a brand new showroom and an even better facility for showcasing moveable walls.

In 2016, Style announced that it was the first moveable partitioning wall company to make BIM objects for their folding wall systems available on the award winning RIBA NBS National BIM Library.

Continuing to innovate, Style spearheaded the shift to fully automatic moveable wall solutions, often combining Dorma Huppe and Skyfold in the same room to create truly breath-taking methods of changing the use of space.

It also began to lead the way as glass solutions grew in demand, with buildings requiring flexible room space that also offered a light, airy, open plan feel.

With demand for glass soaring, Style extended its offering once again, further strengthening its partnership with the dormakaba Group in 2021 to offer its market-leading range of non-acoustic interior glass Horizontal Sliding Walls (HSW).

This opened up new markets for Style, with the horizontal sliding wall (HSW), folding sliding wall (FSW) and HSW Flextherm solutions meeting the needs of shop frontages, banks, offices, restaurants, reception areas, hotels, residential homes, winter gardens, airports and sports stadia and arenas.

It was soon followed by the launch of a new balcony and terrace sliding wall, for urban balconies, or relaxing garden terraces.

Throughout all this time, Style engaged with architects across the country, developing strong relationships and a quality reputation, becoming well-known for its two RIBA approved CPDs on the subjects of multi-functional space and fully automatic vertically rising acoustic partition systems.

Over 25 years Style has established itself as delivering the very highest quality products through a UK-wide team that is talented, committed and experienced.

“I am immensely proud of what we have all achieved together at Style during the last 25 years,” said Julian Sargent. “It has been a team effort from day one and we have built up a reputation for high quality products, installations, support, advice, processes and quality standards thanks to the hard work of our exceptional people, many of whom have been with the business from the very early days.

“The decision to pass the group MD ‘baton’ to Michael Porter has been part of very careful succession planning.

“We looked long and hard for someone who could take Style forward and Michael joined the business five years ago, as part of a long-term plan that he would become group managing director.

“For those who know me in the moveable walls sector, they will be more than aware that I am not retiring! I will remain very much involved in the business as chairman, but will leave the running and leadership to Michael, who I know will do a tremendous job.

“I would like to thank everyone who has worked for us, and supported us, over the last 25 years and I look forward to many more years of success in the future.”

For more information, please contact your nearest regional Style office