"Changes in consumer shopping habits have led to food companies needing a more responsive logistics partner that is able to consolidate products in order to cost-effectively deliver little and often"
Marcus Boardall, chief executive of Reed Boardall
Temperature controlled food storage and distribution business Reed Boardall is continuing to invest in expansion at its North Yorkshire facility following a year of steady growth in revenue alongside improvements in operating efficiencies.
In line with its pre-COVID plans, the North Yorkshire-based company has undertaken work on an extension to one of the cold stores at its 55 acre site in Boroughbridge which will once again make it the largest and most modern cold store site in the UK, increasing capacity to 168,000 pallets.
Reed Boardall’s latest financial results (year ending 31 March 2020) show that underlying turnover grew by 8.9%, rising to £68.4m from £62.8m the previous year, driven by higher volumes through its cold store and transport operation, together with rising use of its ancillary blast freezing, picking and packing services.
Despite continued pressure on margins with increasing costs and strong competition in the transport sector, Reed Boardall proved able to implement operational efficiencies bringing an increase in profits with underlying EBITDA at £4.44m (2019: £3.38m).
With the continued growth of its customer base across the UK, Reed Boardall has grown to become one of the largest temperature controlled food distribution businesses in the UK with a fleet of 196 vehicles operating 24 hours a day, year round, to deliver 12,000 pallets of frozen food daily for its clients.
The business operates four state-of-the-art cold stores at its single Boroughbridge site, and has undertaken work on a 110,000sq ft extension to its newest cold store facility. The build programme to extend Cold Store 4 is expected to be completed in March 2021.
“We’ve operated in this specialist field for over 25 years and work with food processors and retailers throughout the country who rely on us for to supply their product on time and in premium condition,” explains Marcus Boardall, chief executive of Reed Boardall.
“Changes in consumer shopping habits have led to food companies needing a more responsive logistics partner that is able to reliably consolidate products in order to cost-effectively deliver little and often. Our single site business model has proved ideal for this, resulting in a growth in demand for our services and, therefore, the need to extend our facilities.
“2019 was a particularly busy year for us as we continued to support the growth of our customers, and we again put in a solid financial performance, seeing turnover grow. Having already decided that the time was right to invest in expanding our cold storage facility at Boroughbridge, we were committed to moving forward with the project, undeterred by the turmoil of the pandemic which put intense pressure on the logistics sector– 2020 was a stark reminder of how important it is to have a robust and responsive supply chain.”
Finance director Sarah Roberts adds: “Our latest financial results once again show a picture of strength and stability as we continue to build on our long history of partnering with some of the leading names in the UK food industry.
“While the company has remained resilient, we have battled tough trading conditions with fierce competition making it difficult to recover costs, particularly in the transport division. However, our ongoing focus on operating as efficiently as possible has delivered impressive results and put us on a sound footing for further expansion, despite the uncertainty of the pandemic together with the unknown impact of Brexit.
“As a company which is always looking ahead, we are determined to ensure that we have the capacity to seamlessly cope with peaks in our customers’ storage needs and believe it is vital to continue to invest in improving and expanding our facilities and services.
“Given the current situation, with unprecedented demand from consumers for frozen food, we are prepared for 2021 to be another extremely busy year and would like to thank our hard working and committed team for pulling out all the stops to help our customers keep the supermarket freezers full.”
Reed Boardall is one of the largest temperature controlled food distribution businesses in the UK, storing and delivering frozen food from manufacturers across Britain, Europe and further afield to all the UK’s best-known supermarkets. It employs almost 800 staff at its single site in Boroughbridge, Yorkshire.