Gardman has reported a pre-tax loss of £1.5m for the year ending December 2016, mainly down to the exceptional costs of almost £2.3m associated with re-structuring following the previous year’s management buy-out.
The results show a significant improvement in the company’s fortunes compared to 2015, when an operating loss of £6.1m was reported.
However, the directors say EBITDA, which saw a dramatic 50% improvement from £3.2m to £4.8m over the year, is the best indicator of how strongly the company is now performing.
They say that following the management buyout backed by Rutland Partners LLP on 23 June 2015, the group has continued to make good progress in its core markets whilst also developing its strategic direction thanks to its ability to invest in exciting new categories and strengthen operational infrastructure.
Revenue in the year grew by 6.5% to £60.5m (£56.2m in the UK, up 6.2%) and margins improved. The group expects a similar growth rate in 2017 following good sales increases in the first half of 20I7. It continues to invest in strengthening the sales and marketing teams.
Net return on sales last year was a loss of 2.4% compared to a loss of 10.7% in 2015, an improvement expected to continue this year. Sales per employee went up from £286,657 in 2015 to £293,472.
The cost challenges experienced following the Brexit vote and subsequent impact on currency have been managed through more efficient supply chain sourcing and a rebalancing of pricing.
The company has gained significant new distribution and new product listings within its existing customer base.
Gardman has made a significant investment this year in a new more centrally located warehouse facility in Daventry (visited, above, by the sales force as it neared completion in late summer) . This, the company says, will provide further distribuition efficiency and allow the company to meet future growth plans.