Stax Trade Centres’ dedication to helping keep the supply chain open in 2020 has paid dividends, as the company’s annual financial reports revealed a strong and profitable performance despite the year’s challenges.
The report shows that in the year ending 29th August 2020, turnover reached £135.4 million (up from £116.0 million the previous year) whilst an operating profit of £4.6 million (up from £0.2 million the previous year) was achieved. The EBITDA also grew to £5.7 million (up from £1.2 million in 2019).
“We are delighted that the figures reflect the tremendous amount of work we have put in and the strong and stable position in which the business now finds itself,” comments Joint Managing Director David Hibbert.
“Despite the difficult trading conditions that have prevailed for much of this year we have grown our overall sales, significantly enhanced our cash position and improved our working capital management performance. That has left us in a strong position to face future challenges, which is good news for us, and for the independent retailers and trade professionals across the UK who rely on us for wholesale support.”
When the UK was plunged into lockdown back in March, Stax focussed heavily on developing its website and even launched its annual Big Brands Trade Show, in an unprecedented online format, in response to pandemic restrictions.
Increased consumer spending across a series of key product categories reflected the full-year trading impact of various business developments such as the acquisition of ironmongery supplier MP Smith & Co, and a new Solus distribution agreement with gardening products supplier, SBM Life Science. They also confirm that Stax has overcome the effects of a cyber-attack which affected the company early in 2019.
“During the pandemic, many of the UK’s hardware stores were deemed as essential suppliers and allowed to remain open,” adds David. “We were, and still are, absolutely committed to keeping supply chains open so that our customers can continue trading, and we’ve been able to achieve that whilst following all the government guidelines to protect our staff and our customers.”
David’s also quick to point out that his team has one eye firmly on the future: “The situation regarding the UK’s departure from Europe is obviously still causing uncertainty, but we have been carefully evaluating the impact which this process might have on specific customer and supply chain issues. We feel that these will be manageable, and we have careful plans in place to mitigate any effects on ourselves and our customers.
“One thing we can rely on is that new challenges will continue to be thrown at us in the future. However, the figures clearly show that whatever we are faced with, the business is resilient, adaptable and able to come back fitter and stronger than before.”
Stax is the UK’s largest non-food wholesaler and provides genuine trade-only wholesale support for a wide range of independent retailers and tradespeople across the country. It supplies many different market segments, including gardening, hardware, building, decorating, electrical, plumbing, homeware, bathrooms and kitchens.