Growth shows no signs of cooling for Tubby Tom’s

Just four years since starting out, Forest of Dean hot sauce and seasoning company Tubby Tom’s is targeting a 50 per cent increase in turnover in 2022 – with business owner Tom Hughes sharing one of the secret’s to its fast-track success.

By Andrew Merrell  |  Published

Hot sauce and seasoning company Tubby Tom’s has revealed a tenfold surge in production since it launched on a market stall just four years – with another 50 per cent growth expected in 2022.

Tom Hughes began selling his wares at Over Farm and Stroud Farmer’s Market under the tongue-in-cheek, self-mocking brand name, and quickly developed a loyal customer base that suggested a business with real potential.

Hughes, 30, has credited guidance he received from The Growth Hub, the Gloucestershire-based business support network, as crucial to helping him capitalise on that potential.

‘Last year turnover was in the region of half a million pounds. This year we’re aiming to grow by 50 per cent, less than previous years, as we’re concentrating on our new production processes and bringing in more staff,’ said Hughes, who began working with The Growth Hub in 2018.

What was once a one-man operation now has six staff and a new headquarters in Churcham in the Forest of Dean, where it creates more than 70 products.

Production has increased from 13,000 bottles a year to 166,000 – 22,000 litres of extra sauce per annum – and the Gloucestershire business has a growing network of stockists UK-wide.

Andy Kime, business guide at The Growth Hub, said: ‘When we put a plan in place four years ago, Tom was at a point where he was looking to get serious and we were able to pull a strategy together that gave him some defined markers to push for in regards to turnover, profit, products and everything in between.

‘Tom took this plan, stuck with it and has smashed every target we set out in 2018 — which is a true testament to his passion and commitment to the business. Tom is a glowing example of how true ambition can translate into real success.’

Hughes said: ‘In the next four years, we hope to be using our latest project, which is a kitchen three times the size of our current one – currently being built in an adjacent unit.

‘This will hopefully make us even more efficient, and as well as the new kitchen, we want to have more people working in it.’

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