Independent timber group Premier Forest Group Ltd has posted another successive year of record growth as it marks its 25th anniversary and announces its first CEO.
The financial year ending April 2018 saw sales revenue grow by £10 million to a turnover of £126 million, with pre-tax profits more than doubling to over £9 million.
The Newport-based company, which is principally engaged in the import, distribution, merchanting, sawmilling and wholesale processing of timber and timber products, is on course to achieve a targeted £200 million turnover within the next three to four years.
The record growth comes as it is announced that co-founder and director Terry Edgell is to take on the role of group CEO.
Non-executive Chairman John Antoniazzi said: “As one of the three founding shareholders of the Premier Forest Group, Terry has been instrumental in the company’s growth and development. It is appropriate that as the Group embarks on its next phase of growth that the board recognises his increasing leadership role and ability to drive the company’s strategic ambitions.”
The year has also seen two site relocations for the group, as well as the appointment of two new directors. Clarks Wood in Bristol relocated to South Wales to pool resources and expand its service offering with parent company Premier Forest Products in Newport Docks, while Premier Goldberg moved to a new 53,000 square foot site in Langley near Heathrow, allowing it to take advantage of the vast opportunities that the south east of England has to offer.
“The projections for the current financial year are indicating another record year being achieved,” said Edgell. “We have achieved significant organic growth thanks to the extensive range of timber and timber products we sell across the group and our customer-focused sales attitude. For the year ahead, we also intend to grow further by acquisition, with several strategically important companies already targeted, and there will be continued capital investment in all divisions.
Premier Forest Group operates across 14 sites in the UK and Ireland and includes Premier Forest Products, Premier Forest Processing and Clarks Wood in Newport; Premier Forest Sawmilling and Mill Timber Direct in Crumlin in South Wales; Duchy Timber in Lostwithiel in Cornwall; Premier Goldberg in Langley; Premier Doncaster; Premier Birmingham sales office; Dublin Plywood and Veneers and seven sites for the Brooks Group in Ireland.
The geographic spread of its businesses gives the group even greater confidence in its future. “With national coverage in both the UK and Southern Ireland, we have a balanced portfolio of businesses with 50% of sales revenue coming from our Irish brands and 50% from our UK brands,” added Edgell.
“With Ireland still exhibiting one of the fastest growth rates in Europe, and Brexit just around the corner, we are fortunate to be partially insulated from some of the potential negative impacts of the UK’s exit from the EU, so we remain very positive for the group’s future growth.”