The Company has established an extensive distribution network over the last 25 years with significant capital expenditure on property, plant and equipment, totalling for example £71.3 million over the last ten years. The Company is able to facilitate next day delivery to customers, and the UK network currently comprises four national distribution hubs, 14 regional distribution centres, 40 trade counters, and a corporate showroom in London. In Continental Europe, there are a further four distribution centres and 20 trade counters.
The Company’s network currently has warehouse capacity of approximately 65 million cubic feet (58 million in the UK and 7 million in Continental Europe).
A total of 5,586,829 customer orders were processed in 2016 (5,117,288 in the UK and 469,541 in Continental Europe). Orders are received and inputted by each business’s individual sales team, and processed utilising IT systems which allow the product to be located in the warehouse, selected, cut if appropriate, and sorted for next day delivery. The Company owns 30 cutting tables and operates a fleet of 297 forklift trucks and 381 commercial vehicles. Commercial vehicles are fitted with a tracking system that monitors performance and each driver has an iPhone-based delivery app providing real-time delivery schedules, arrival estimates, and subsequently generates electronic proof of delivery and invoices.
|NETWORK||NO.||APPROX. AVERAGE SIZE (cubic feet)|
| Distribution Hub||4||6,900,000|
| Distribution Centre||18||1,800,00|
| Trade Counter||60||90,000|
| Corporate Showroom||1||N/A|
The total number of UK trade counters has grown from 25 to 40 since the end of 2013 with the intention to open more to support growth. Trade counters are a relatively low-cost way of expanding the network and increasing engagement with customers, particularly in the commercial sector, while offering customers even more immediate access to products through collection.
In addition, the corporate showroom in Clerkenwell, London was established in 2015 to target the specified commercial flooring market. Clerkenwell is a wellestablished design hub with a number of architectural practices in the area, and the dedicated sales team are targeting projects ranging in size from 100m2 to 10,000m2.
There continues to be ample opportunity to enhance and more effectively and efficiently utilise parts of the distribution network to support growth and increase profitability. Certain businesses have grown to an extent whereby they would benefit from larger premises. One such example is Faithfulls Floorcoverings which is proposed to move into a newly built dedicated regional distribution centre in Ipswich in 2019.
Continued revenue growth allows the Company to build on its relationship with suppliers and leverage its extensive distribution network, and thereby return increasing levels of profitability through operational gearing.
65 Million cubic feet warehouse capacity
5,586,829 customer orders processed in 2016
11,324 miles of floor covering sold in 2016*
953,428 customer collections in 2016 in the UK
* Based on a width of 4.25m