Turnover at one of Gloucestershire’s biggest family businesses, started by just one man with a borrowed digger, has grown from £51 million to £80 million after what it called a ‘strong start’ to its financial year.
Smiths (Gloucester) Limited, which employs 500-plus staff, said its performance for its last financial year had been ‘very encouraging’, although profit after tax fell from £1,799,772 to £499,662.
Started by now managing director, Alan Smith, in 1982, Smiths is now one of the largest construction, demolition, waste management and transport companies in the South West – to name just some of its services.
The Stonehouse-headquartered business said the good start to 2019/2020 had stood it in good stead for what was to come.
In the firm’s recently published annual report for the period ending Wednesday, 30 September, 2020, Mr Smith, said: ‘Despite a challenging 18-month trading period due to the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak, the performance of the group for this period was very encouraging.
‘Continued growth and increasing diversity in the waste provision has enabled the company to maintain and grow turnover whilst keeping the controls of costs as a priority.
‘The 12 months to March (2020) saw a significant growth for the company and this growth proved invaluable in sustaining trading levels during the following months.’
Nevertheless, the business admits it still ‘felt it prudent to utilise the government support schemes available to it and it continues to do so where appropriate’.
It was also able to arrange a £5,000,000 CLBILS (Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme) with its bank, Santander.
‘At this stage the impact on our trading and results are limited,’ said Mr Smith.
‘We continue to follow the various UK government guidelines and in parallel will do our utmost to continue our operations in the best and safest way possible without jeopardising the health of our staff.’
By Andrew Merrell