It's a crisp profit as Tyrrells boosts sales
Crisp maker Tyrrells has reported soaring sales and profits for last year as it expanded sales both in the UK and overseas.
The Leominster-based company, which is best known for its luxury crisps brand, saw its pre-tax profits more than double, rising from £3.9 million to £8.2 million in a year in which the company made significant headway in markets both home and abroad.
Sales increased by 22 per cent to £49.3 million over the period ending March 2017, 2015, the latest accounts filed with Companies House reveal.
The company's growth has been significant over the course of the last five years. When it filed its accounts at this point in 2011, the company reported turnover of £16.9 million, pre-tax profits of £3.3 million, and 98 staff on its books – 80 fewer than it has today.
When including other brands in the group, including the line of vegetable crisps made by sister company Glennans at a factory in Uttoxeter in Staffordshire, Tyrrells' Leominster-based parent company Crisps Topco grew turnover from £32.1 million to £56.6 million, and operating profit from £69,000 to £4.1 million.
The company has diversified from its original crisp-making operation, and now also produces lines of popcorn, peanuts, and rice crackers.
Crisps remain its most well-known division, however, and the company's branding is aimed at reflecting its rural English background.
With flavours including lobster, chilli and garlic, and butter and mint, some products remain a world away from the more traditional British favourites.
"Tyrrells' fan base of snack connoisseurs is forever growing, both on home soil and abroad and we're continually looking to expand our horizons even further," said chief executive David Milner.
"It's fantastic to see our investment and growth strategy has paid off thus far.
"However, we aren't about to rest on our laurels. There's still a wealth of opportunity to be had and so we're now looking for new opportunities to help us remain at the forefront of premium snacking."
Tyrrells was founded in Leominster by farmer William Chase in 2002, before selling the majority shareholding of the business to Langholm Capital in 2008 for £30 million.
The company was sold on again in 2013, to Bahrain-based investment vehicle Investcorp, in a £100 million deal.
At the time of the deal Mr Milner said he hoped the investment from the company's new owners would lead to an increase in sales in international markets, and while the UK remains comfortably the largest sales territory for the company, it has made progress in several European markets.
In the "hand-cooked crisp" category, Tyrrells is now the market leader in France and Switzerland, and is the second biggest seller in Germany and the Netherlands. Sales in Britain grew from £31.5 million to £39.3 million, in Europe they increased from £6.46 to £6.61 million, and across the rest of the world they were up from £2.33 million to £3.39 million. Tyrrells paid out around £647,000 of tax on its profits for the year, the accounts reveal.
They also show that the number of people working for the Chase Farm-based company increased from 149 to 178, with the bulk of that increase coming on the production line.
The figures also show that Tyrrells was hit by exceptional costs of £1.5 million during the year, a decrease from the £2.2 million during 2014. It said the bulk of the cost came from customer disputes and management reorganisation.
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