Being forced to down-tools early in the pandemic and facing the closure of a major customer did not stop Gloucestershire-based car parts maker G-Tekt from turning over £145 million – and helping the NHS too.
Judging by its annual report, G-Tekt Europe Manufacturing Ltd has risen to the economic challenges it faces with positivity.
If you drive a Honda or a number of other car marques, including BMW, it could have been part-made at the Brockworth-based plant owned by the business, which employs nearly 900 staff.
Next year, it expects a pandemic-related 28 per cent drop in turnover to £105 million, but the firm (which has brushed off speculation on its future post Brexit, and news major customer Swindon-based Honda is closing) remains stoic.
‘The company has other large customers, which ensures that the business will remain a going concern following Honda closure.
‘Current expectations are that no loss of major contracts with other customers will occur, but contingencies and alternative plans are continually considered.
‘The directors are strongly of the view that the business will continue as a going concern,’ said the report, which covers the period to the end of March 2020.
In the last financial year capital investment was £12,069,000 (2019: £16,271,000), largely spent on finishing a second factory in Gloucester.
In the 12 months ended 31 March 2020 sales were £145,005,000 compared to £140,064,000 the previous year.
Pre-tax profit fell to £18,424,000 for the year, compared to £21,260,000 for same period the previous year. Staff numbers increased overall from 860 to 898.
When customers stopped production of new cars due to Covid-19, G-Tekt followed suit in Gloucester, furloughing most staff from 20 March 2020 and using the government job retention scheme.
‘The estimated impact up to 31 March 2020 was a loss of £3,500,000 sales and £875,000 loss of profits.’
Instead, it began supplying kits for new airway pressure device to the NHS, which helped keep patients out of intensive care, and brought and distributed PPE to surgeries in Gloucestershire.
Despite all this, its staff team once again achieved ‘best in its class’ for its ‘customer quality and delivery targets’.
By Andrew Merrell