Beaverbrooks emerges strong following pandemic year
Family-owned jewellery retailer, Beaverbrooks, has released its latest accounts showing the company’s success throughout the pandemic year despite widespread store closures due to Covid-19 restrictions.
In a year that saw the jeweller’s 71 stores unable to trade for six months of the period due to national lockdowns, the retailer was able to maintain a strong financial footing and roles for all colleagues, with no redundancies made during the entire pandemic.
Despite the challenges the year presented, Group turnover was £123.1m for the retailer, down only 14 per cent against 2019/20, which was the company’s Centenary and the brand’s most profitable year of its 102-year history. Beaverbrooks ended the financial year with a Group operating profit of £16.3m (£17m in 2020) and a gross profit margin of 15.1 per cent (18.4 per cent in 2020), a pleasing result for the retailer against a challenging backdrop of retail and high-street closures.
The retailer put its successful handling of the pandemic year down to a people-centric approach to business that put the safety of colleagues and customers first, protected jobs and incomes, and safeguarded the future of the company.
The business was able to receive Government Covid-19 business support during the financial year, accessing the Job Retention Scheme, business rates relief and Closed Business grants. This assistance ensured it was able to support its people throughout a difficult year, retaining jobs for its 960+ colleagues.
The jeweller also continued to focus heavily on its people, ensuring colleagues felt engaged with business decisions and direction, an approach that led it to being awarded the number one position in the 100 Best Companies to Work For list 2021, in addition to being announced as ‘Retail’s Best Company to Work For’.
Anna Blackburn, managing director of Beaverbrooks, said: “There’s no doubt that 2020 was a challenging year for the sector, so to come out the other side in such a strong financial position is something we are incredibly proud of as a business.
“For us, it was all about adapting to the changing landscape and ensuring we put the safety of our people and customers as our number one priority. It’s no secret that the retail industry was hit hard by the pandemic, so we’re delighted to have retained such a strong level of profit despite our 71 stores being closed for half of the trading year, as well as continuing to invest in our business, our people and our commitment to charitable causes.
Mark Adlestone OBE DL, Chairman of Beaverbrooks, said: “A people-first ethos has always been at the heart of our business, and this was more important than ever during a year where our trading decisions were significantly influenced by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Staying true to our purpose and being agile in our business decisions and direction, meant we were able to navigate a year of store closures and restrictions with an engaged workforce, zero redundancies, ensuring families were supported during this difficult time, and healthy levels of profit to continue to reinvest in our business.
“I have no doubt that the decisions we made throughout the pandemic helped us to achieve this and gave us a strong financial foothold as we entered 2021. We braved the storm and came out the other side even stronger – we are delighted with how we are currently trading, and while there have been hurdles along the way it has been a truly extraordinary story for us.”
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