Sweet taste of success

Confectionery wholesaler Hancocks saw turnover grow by 13.4% year-on-year to £129m as more than 5,000 new customers registered at its 20 cash and carries.

The strong trading figures come just a month before the opening of the wholesaler’s newest depot – a 14,000sq ft outlet that expects to capitalise on footfall generated by its proximity to one of Booker’s busiest outlets.

The depot in Rochester, Kent, will be unveiled on March 1 and tempting customers with two weeks of what it calls “remarkable offers” and “plenty of support from a number of confectionery suppliers”.

CEO Mark Watson broadly attributes business growth to a number of factors: “We purchased JTS, a confectionery wholesale business in 2014 and this has clearly expanded the capacity of our distribution to larger organisations and leisure groups such as Merlin. Coupled with this, our e-commerce venture has seen remarkable growth across the year, with sales up more than 60% on the previous year. Some of the cash and carries have had outstanding performances, in particular, our Croydon depot, which serves a key geographic area around the south of London”.

He added that 2015 was set to be another busy year: “We are finalising the development of some very exciting new product ranges, a number concerning licenced character products. Investment will continue in both the cash and carries and our e-commerce website to build the business further.”

Hancocks says online sales rose 60% year-on-year in 2014 with the start of 2015 showing promising results already. The wholesaler says development of website functionality, product range and the resources needed to run such a fast growing part of the business continue.

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