The Henderson Group has announced an increase of 10.9% in its pre-tax profit after interest, in a year where the wholesale giant’s turnover grew by 6% to £699.3m.
Strong investment, and retaining current customers and attracting new ones helped spearhead the growth, as the Group saw grocery sales rise by 3.5%, and fresh food categories growing by over 8%.
In addition, the foodservice arm of the business also saw profitable growth of 11% in the most recent year financial year, which aligns with the 2016 calendar year.
The company said that an ongoing co-investment strategy with its retail partners to establish a portfolio of supermarket, forecourt and convenience stores helped boost the sales performance across all its brand formats, with a total of £40m of additional sales being generated.
Patrick Doody, sales and marketing director for Henderson Group, said: “A comprehensive strategic growth and profitability plan implemented in 2016, which included developing our information systems, maximising our operational efficiency, enhancing our fresh food ranges and in-store proposition, continues to yield results as projected.”
He added: “It was also another record year of investment by the Group, with a spend of over £34m in store acquisitions, store refurbishments and head office infrastructure, designed to future-proof the business to meet consumer and retailer demands going forward.”
The company’s Barista Bar coffee brand, which is now available in 260 Spar, Eurospar and Vivo stores, saw sales rise by 30% in 2016.
Sixteen new stores were opened by Henderson Group in 2016, with employment levels rising to nearly 3,100.