The freshly re-united Laings group will achieve sales of £35 million in its current financial year that ends this month.
Managing director Joe Walsh reveals to WatchPro, Professional Jeweller’s sister title, that the former Laing and Parkhouse businesses, owned by Michael Laing until summer of last year, will deliver sales of around £20 million.
What was formerly Laings of Glasgow, owned by Stuart Laing, will finish the year with turnover of around £15 million.
In a fascinating story about the past, present and future of the 178 year old family business, Mr Walsh describes how the company is now in a position to operate as a national UK business through its seven stores in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Southampton and Cardiff.
“We cover Scotland, Wales with Cardiff and Southampton. That gives us an opportunity to put Laings on a national platform, particularly with the online side of the business, which is just growing and growing. We do see the future as a lot more web-based,” he describes.
All stores are being re-branded as Laings, and will report into a single head office in Glasgow that will run national marketing campaigns.
“You are going to see a lot more advertising this year with Laings in national campaigns like in The Telegraph. We have big marketing spend allocated to that. Previously, we had a bit of Glasgow advertising, a bit of Edinburgh, a bit of Parkhouse down South. Now, with all stores trading as Laings, we can go national with our advertising,” says Mr Walsh.
Despite a considerable amount of work going into merging the back office systems and teams for the Laings head office, Mr Walsh says he still thinks the business can open new stores this year. “There are always opportunities knocking on the door and we are looking at two or three new stores,” he reveals.