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When it comes to choosing the right kit for filling balloons, Glenn Warner knows it’s a false economy to buy cheap.
Glenn is director of specialist card, gift and party supplier Cardwise and has spent 28 years in the wholesale trade (selling gas and valves for gift and party suppliers), and 10 in the retail trade.
Today, his company focuses entirely on retail and operates five branches across the south east – two in Essex, two in London and one in Gosport near Portsmouth. Jackie, from one of the Essex shops, is pictured above. Cardwise sells latex and foil balloons but the latter are by far the most popular.
“When I was a wholesaler everyone used to ask for BOC’s anti-burst dual outlet automatic filling kits with a gauge,” said Glenn. “The biggest benefit is that it stops when the foil balloon is full, so you’re not wasting gas and balloons. Having the gauge is also useful because then you know when to reorder. There’s nothing worse than finding out on a Friday evening that you have run out.”
Glenn reckons on 250 fills to a tank and has estimated that 30 or so can be wasted through bursting when the foil is overfilled. But it’s not the only reason why the right kit for the job is important.
“Bursting balloons in front of the customer is not impressive, so although the kit may be more expensive to start with, it’s worth it in the long run,” added Glenn.
One of Cardwise’s Essex branches lays claim to the most number of fills, with 250 a week compared to an average of 500 a month in the others.
“I guess people have a lot of parties in Essex,” said Glenn.
As well as equipment, Glenn is keen to point out that a supplier like BOC that’s been around for years and can be trusted is another consideration.
“When I talk to Natalie, my account manager at BOC, I know she’ll go out of her way,” he added. “And when I pick up from BOC outlets in Poplar and Essex, it’ll be a good service.”