Clipper Logistics' agility highlighted by the pandemic
What it does
Focused on the retail sector during normal times, it has delivered all manner of other products, including bread.
And it joined the huge logistical effort to get personal protection equipment to the doctors and nurses on the NHS frontline.
Agility really has been a hallmark of the company, which sees itself more a consultant and advisor to its customers than simply a third-party logistics company that carries assorted goods from one end of the country to the other.
That might sound a bit grand. However, Clipper appears really to have thought hard about the value-added services it provides.
One of the first decisions the group made early on was to focus on retail.
“Our view was we’d rather be an expert in one field, which has served us well,” explains chief executive Tony Mannix. “And when the industry started to evolve to online in 2005/6 that gave us a great opportunity to speak to our customers about helping them on that journey.”
How it’s doing
In June, Clipper reported it had continued to trade well throughout the year and financial performance was broadly in line with expectations for profit [EBITA] of circa £24mln for the year to 30 April 2020, an increase of nearly 19% on the prior year.
For the current year (FY21), Clipper said consensus for EBITA is £25.8mln and the board said it is confident it can comfortably top these expectations.
“In total, the new activities brought on since lockdown, coupled with new contracts coming on stream in Q1 FY21, will add a further 1.5mln square feet of space to Clipper's pre-existing 10mln sq. ft. infrastructure.
“The group has also seen a significant increase in its tender pipeline; the annualised revenue of the probability-weighted pipeline stood at over £50mln as at 18 May 2020, a significant increase on the same period last year.”
Revenue in Europe grew by 41.3% in FY19 and by a further 33.7% in FY20.
What the boss says: Steve Parkin, executive chairman
"Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Clipper has continued to demonstrate its agility and ability to focus on customer service and providing innovative solutions in a rapidly evolving environment, highlighting the importance not only of robust supply chains but collaboration as well.