Fowler Welch margins up

Leeds, UK: Fowler Welch, reporting through its parent company, Dart Group, has seen overall revenues up 8% on the half year ended September 2012.

Fowler Welch cites additional warehousing and distribution business thought its national operations for the growth. Ambient business has expanded, particularly at the company’s distribution centre in Heywood, where revenues increased by 25% in the first half of the year.  Container operations grew through targeted new business wins and existing customer growth, as well as the provision of additional network support.

Nick Hay, Fowler Welch managing director: “Our operating margins are better than for the first half due to revenue growth, fleet productivity and cost-reductions

Nick Hay, Fowler Welch managing director, says: “Our operating margins are better than for the first half year of 2011/12 due to further revenue growth, improved fleet productivity and our attainment of a number of cost-reduction initiatives.

“In addition, we’ve improved operational efficiency through the reconfiguration of certain sections of our warehouse space. Other operational efficiencies are also being realised, in particular with the introduction of telemetry and driver development managers to the business.

“These investments, along with our focus on vehicle design and set-up have positively impacted fuel-efficiency over the past six months. We expect this to continue, and will also be investing yet further in energy-efficient lighting and refrigeration equipment throughout our network.”

“What has pleased me most of all has been the growing evidence that Fowler Welch’s reputation for high quality service is giving us real opportunities for strong revenue growth. In the ambient sector alone, our Heywood DC has the scope to capitalise yet further on its 500,000sq.ft. capacity of freehold distribution centre in Greater Manchester. The sales pipeline at this site in particular remains very buoyant,” Hay says.

“Additionally, we are devoting considerable resource to the development of IT systems and infrastructure.  Phase one of a new Transport Management System will shortly be rolled out, with anticipated delivery of the system across our entire transport network by Summer 2013. This will give us even greater visibility of resources, volumes and operational data, enabling further focus on efficiencies. I am confident that our commitment to operational excellence, our national network coverage and growing presence in the ambient arena position us very favourably for future growth.”

For the Fowler Welch parent company, the Dart Group, which also operates Jet2.com leisure airline and Jet2holidays, the half year was also positive. Group profit before tax was £57.0m, an increase of 37% on the previous half year (2011: £41.6m); while turnover was up 31% at £584.5m (2011: £445.7m).

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