Turnover at Beaverbrooks the Jewellers increased by 5% during the 52 weeks ended 27 February 2016, its newly published accounts reveal.
The company’s ‘Annual Report and Financial Statements’, shows a 5% increase in turnover from £113.6m to £119m, with gross profit jumping from £21.8m to £23.3m.
Operating profit before distribution and tax reached £15.2m up from £14.3m in the previous year.
Despite Beaverbrooks describing trading conditions on the high street as “extremely competitive” during this 52 week period, gross profitability maintained at 20%. The company attributes this to steering its own course and remaining focused on quality products and excellent customer service.
Beaverbrooks the Jewellers also continued with its programme of investment during the period. This includes the continue refurbishment of retail stores, development of its consumer website, and utilisation of technical advancements within central systems. Elsewhere, the business also invested in its staff, with performance linked bonus structures being implemented for all colleagues, and developed its energy saving initiatives by rolling out further LED lighting installations in stores.
The directors say in the report: “Success at Beaverbrooks is not only measured in financial terms. A strong commitment to learning and development of all employees, an open and honest company culture and commitment to the wider community in which we work, are all borne out in the many accolades awarded to the company during this period.”
During the period 247 colleagues received selling skills and managing the sales floor training, while 196 new colleagues were guided through the company’s introductory period, a three tier program involving mentoring, research and on the job training. 43 colleagues passed Beaverbrooks’ in house management development program.
In addition, 33% of its employees were involved in workplace giving, five times the national average, for which it won the Government and Institute of Fundraising’s Platinum Award 2016. Beaverbrooks is the UK’s top jewellery retailer and second biggest supporter of the scheme on the high street. During the period Beaverbrooks employees gave £27,460 through payroll giving. The net donation was then matched by the company resulting in total donations of £48,828.
The directors expect the general level of activity to increase in the forthcoming year. This is as a result of exciting new initiatives and two new store openings. Looking ahead, investment in infrastructure is expected to be significantly higher than 2016 as more of the retail stores are developed to ensure the best possible customer experience.
Anna Blackburn, chief executive officer at Beaverbrooks the Jewellers, comments: “We’ve recorded our highest level of operating profit in the last two financial years which we’re delighted with. 2016 has seen us named in The Sunday Times ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’ for the 13th consecutive year and we’ve added two new stores to our estate – our 69th opened on Thursday December 8 in London’s Westfield Stratford City. We are looking forward to a busy Christmas trading period and are optimistic about the year ahead.”