Simon Toplass of Pagabo at Construction Frameworks Conference, Kensington Town Hall. 02.10.19

Pagabo are one of the UK’s leading framework providers – and their unique approach is helping them see unrivalled growth as they continue to expand. The Hull based firm were recently involved in our Humber Estuary Development Conference and we’ve been hearing from their Chief Executive Simon Toplass…

Q. Pagabo originates in Hull, how do you feel the development industry in the Humber Estuary region has changed since your founding?

As a local business, we keep a close eye on developments in our region and the possible benefits these bring with them. Although there has been a clear improvement in recent times through things like the city of culture investment in Hull and a variety of other schemes, there’s still some way to go to really put the Humber Estuary on the map and level-up our region.

The Hull Lagoon project is an interesting one that particularly stands out as an impactful one to come, and of course, who can forget our new home down Hull’s Whitefriargate which team Pagabo will be moving into during spring 2021. Watch this space…

Q. You’re launching a massive £47bn developer-led framework, how did this come about and what makes it stand out?

Yes, this is such an exciting prospect for all of us at Pagabo and at this current moment comes as the first developer-led framework to the market. Likewise, with every framework we launch, we consider how it will create positive change for the industry as a whole. We are listening to clients and understanding what projects the public sector is looking to procure and when. In this case, a developer-led framework ticked all the boxes.

Q. You’re participating in the Big Build programme to help lead to the covid-19 recovery, what aspects do you think are crucial to the sector’s recovery?

There are three main ones for us:

  • Collaboration – Working together to achieve a common goal and to provide as many benefits as possible for clients has always been crucial but never more so than now.
  • Putting Social Value at the core – Every £1 of public money spent is likely to be heavily scrutinised. Therefore, it’s important work is done across the board to ensure we are in a position to both measure and evidence the real social value generated to local areas and economies for every investment made by the public sector. 
  • Green economic recovery – It’s vital that as a sector we don’t just build back, but we build back better and build back greener. This means putting a bigger focus on how we can be more sustainable in what we do, from building new buildings to repurposing our existing estates and facilities. This is going to require a whole industry effort, emphasizing the importance of the above point of collaboration.

Q. One of the defining principles that underpins PAGABO is social value, could you share some of the ways in which you have recently provided that through your frameworks?

Yes, that’s correct and it’s something we’re extremely proud of. Thanks to the support of our partners at Social Profit Calculator, we are regularly tracking and evidencing the social value we enable for every project that is procured through the use of one of our frameworks. In fact, as of October 2020, we have enabled £3bn in real tangible social value. Find out more on our website: 

A great example is a project Morgan Sindall were recently appointed to through our Medium Works Framework at Horsforth Primary School in West Yorkshire.

Our partners at Morgan Sindall are set to use a local supply-chain to deliver the build. It is estimated that the £5m project will generate £2.08 in social value for every £1 spent which is an excellent return on public spend.

In addition to this, Morgan Sindall have created a range of programmes for students at the school that will illustrate the many different elements that go into designing, constructing and managing a building. We hope that this will go some way to sparking an interest for the kids and encourage them that our fantastic sector could be right for them.

Q. What are some of the key investments Pagabo has made in the Humber Estuary region?

As a business, we’re passionate about investing money back into the public sector. We’ve invested £1,493,869 in cash back to the public sector through various charitable initiatives and also through our framework hosts, who receive 25% of all fees on works procured through our frameworks.

The Education Alliance is a Trust of six schools in the East Riding of Yorkshire. We’ve worked closely with them since we set up Pagabo back in 2013 and they operate as the host of our Professional Services Framework and our Furniture Solutions Framework.  

As part of the Trust’s ‘Be Well’ initiative, which looks to tackle student’s mental health across their six schools, we’ve agreed to provide £600,000 in funding over the next four years. This is something we’re incredibly proud of at Pagabo and we hope to continue this as long as we’re in operation. 

Q. How did participating in the recent Humber Estuary Conference help PAGABO to further its connections in the region?

It was an excellent opportunity for us to take part in the Humber Estuary Conference, as a local business we are proud to play our part in the region and its economic developments.

We thank Built Environment Networking for this opportunity and look forward to taking part again in future events.