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Category Buyer

United Kingdom, LondonSupply Chain

Job description

About us

The Brompton is acknowledged worldwide as the finest bike of its type and this excellence, combined with resurgence in cycling for transport means we are enjoying strong, sustained growth. If we are to continue to thrive, we need to recruit great people who can drive innovation of our products and the processes used to make them. We are proud of our bikes and enjoy using them. We export 80% of our production to 44 countries around the globe and intend to produce over 71,000 bikes this year but believe that we are just getting started.

Brompton Bicycle manufactures in its factory in West London a bike that is generally considered the best portable bike there is. The company is privately-owned, successful, and profitable, and we have good relationships with our distributors and users.

If you have huge enthusiasm, thrive on being given responsibility and want to make great products that make a difference to people’s lives we can offer you a job you will not find anywhere else.

The role

The category buyer is expected to manage certain categories of bike parts by setting-up long-term category strategies and implement these strategies to achieve a secure and flexible supply chain, good supplier relationship and best value out of the supply base.

Main duties and responsibilities


  • Development of a 3–5-year long-term purchasing strategy for each allocated category
  • Conducting analysis, such as supply market trend analysis, spend analysis and stock level analysis.
  • Implement the purchasing strategy for each allocated category to achieve the most beneficial supply base for the company, including cost saving, efficiency and flexibility improvement as well as risk avoidance and business contingency planning, etc

Sourcing/New projects/Continuous Improvement projects:

  • Working collaboratively with the NPI cross-functional project team and ensuring early involvement of strategic procurement and suppliers into all relevant internal and external project activities
  • Project feasibility analysis regarding costing and lead times
  • Conducting sourcing, RFI, RFP, RFQ, and supplier selection activities, etc
  • Purchasing samples/prototypes
  • Making sure suppliers deliver tasks to the agreed project timelines
  • All the necessary item information is set up in ERP system and all the supplier documents/package reflect the item information
  • Bringing suppliers’ new technology to benefit Brompton
  • All design changes are implemented on new and existing products via NPI or CR/CN process (including making sure any changes are reflected in specifications and drawings by the Design team)

Contract management:

  • Setting up/negotiating/updating contracts with existing and new suppliers appropriately, including prices, lead times, payment terms, delivery terms, service levels and KPIs.
  • Making sure the contracts are filed and stored appropriately
  • Closely working with Production Buying team to monitor and review performances with suppliers
  • Agreeing and monitoring improvement plans with suppliers if their performances deviate from the agreed KPIs in the contract

Cost management:

  • Monitoring and reporting periodically the raw material price indices, such as steel, aluminum, rubber, etc
  • Analysing changes (beneficial and adverse) and driving cost improvements through various purchasing tools and strategies
  • Setting up a cost estimation model for the allocated category.
  • Advising cross-functional team approaches/solutions to achieve the best value for money

Supplier relationship management:

  • Building and driving relationships with suppliers to improve pricing and quality of services
  • Ensuring good communication at all times
  • Establishing escalation process and prioritization of any issues impacting the supply chain
  • Periodical meetings and audits with suppliers, including visits to suppliers as required

Risk management:

  • Updating and reviewing periodically the risk profile of every supplier and score against an internal matrix.
  • Managing procurement risks like supply disruption, lead time & price increases, supplier unreliability, IPR leakages, financial stability, and geopolitical risks
  • Working with suppliers to agree on corrective actions to resolve escalated issues from Production Buying team, such as deliveries and quality issues.

Job requirements

Key skills/experiences/knowledge required:

  • Minimum 2-5 years category management experience in manufacturing industry
  • Contract management experience
  • In-depth knowledge of manufacturing process and supply markets in any of these categories: bike drivetrain parts (e.g., hubs, sprockets, chain, crank sets), E- bike part (e.g., batteries, motors, control modules), wheel parts (e.g., rims and spokes), braking parts (e.g., brake levers, callipers), Injection moulding parts, tubing parts, plating parts, carbon fibre parts, CNC machining parts, metal forming parts, fastening, wire form parts, packaging, P & A (parts & accessories)
  • Must have analytical skills and be a problem solver
  • Excellent knowledge of Microsoft office software, especially EXCEL to conduct data analysis
  • Must have a basic understanding of engineering drawings
  • Proactive, attention to detail and good at communication
  • A track record of achievements in the purchasing area
  • Eligible to work in the UK
  • Full driving licence

Desirable Skills

  • CIPS qualification


  • Bachelor’s degree, preferably in Supply Chain Management, Business or Engineering.