Stevenswood, one of Scotland’s largest manufacturers of PVCu and aluminium windows, doors, conservatories and rigid built kitchens, is gearing up for further expansion after posting a 23% rise in sales.
The Livingston-based company grew its total sales net of VAT to £13.1m in the 12 months to 31 October 2015, up from £10.7m in its previous financial year. Window sales jumped by 21%, while sales of kitchens soared by 33% thanks to rising demand from both trade buyers and the general public.
The business has invested heavily in its cost base over the period yet remained profitable with pre-tax profits of more than £0.5m.
Stevenswood’s growth has been fuelled by a £3.5m investment made in February 2015 by BGF (Business Growth Fund), the independent company established to help the UK’s growing businesses.
Growth capital and advice from BGF has enabled the company to double its number of trade counters from six to 12, with branches opened in locations including Govan, Stirling, Falkirk and Dunfermline.
The business has expanded its factory for producing kitchen units and has recruited 60 staff since BGF’s investment, taking its total headcount up to 158 workers.
In the next stage of the firm’s expansion, Stevenswood will open ten trade counters during 2016, including branches at Seafield and Sighthill in Edinburgh during January and then a further eight units over the coming months at locations such as Bellshill, East Kilbride and Inverness.
Ron Hepburn, managing director of Stevenswood, said: “I am so proud of our growing team – they’ve worked really hard to increase our sales over the past year and now they’re seeing the fruits of their labour.
“It’s very rewarding to see our sales grow by more than one-fifth during the past financial year and to see that our strategy of expanding our kitchens business is already paying off.
“I’m also really excited about opening a further two trade counters in Edinburgh and then eight more throughout Scotland over the course of this year, including moving into important locations like Bellshill, East Kilbride and Inverness.
“Although our main market continues to be our loyal trade customers, we’re also seeing a trend for consumers who want to ‘do it themselves’ and so they’re planning their own kitchens, sourcing their materials from us and then choosing a tradesman to make the purchase.”
Mr Hepburn founded Stevenswood in 1997 alongside his now-retired business partner, Dave Flynn, and originally focused on installing doors and windows.
Duncan Murray joined as a director in 2000 and the company switched to manufacturing its own products, investing £2.3m over the past two years alone in state-of-the-art equipment for its five-acre facility in Houston Industrial Estates in Livingston.
In return for its growth capital, BGF took a minority stake in the business and appointed BGF Investor Patrick Graham to its board.
At the same time, former Focus Wickes group commercial director David Pearson became chairman and Murray McGarvie, ex. Fraser Hart FD, joined as finance director.
Patrick Graham, an Investor at BGF, said: “Ron and his team have quickly put our funding to work by investing in staff and opening new trade counters, which has led to an increase in awareness and sales. This has been great to see, and testament to the strength of the management team.
“BGF invested nearly £50m in businesses across Scotland last year and we are always looking to speak to and meet with interesting companies, like Stevenswood, with ambitions to grow.”