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Shrewsbury retailer to bring in staff and open new stores in bid to hit £20m turnover

By Thom Kennedy | Shrewsbury | Business | Published:

Furniture retailer Alan Ward has outlined plans to grow turnover at the business to £20 million by 2020, and is planning a recruitment drive to boost its efforts.

Alan Ward managing director Carl Johnson

The Shrewsbury-based business, which has its flagship 90,000 sq ft store at Harlescott, is to take on 20 new staff to help it to grow.

The plans, which are intended to grow sales by 40 per cent between now and the end of the decade, include a refurbishment programme and a number of new product categories.

It has already overhauled its Shrewsbury store, along with others in Chester and Newcastle-Under-Lyme, and will soon begin work on its branch in Winsford in Cheshire.

Carl Johnson, Alan Ward’s managing director, said: “There’s a clear link between business success and the quality of your staff.

"The strategy is to grow the business, which is why we are investing in fantastic new products and recruiting the best quality staff, as they will be key in helping the company hit that ambitious target of £20m of annual sales by 2020.

“This will be one of the biggest recruitment drives since the company first began trading in 1970. To put it into perspective, we’ll be increasing our total workforce by almost 20 per cent.

"I’m keen to use this process to identify and recruit highly capable people, who will have the ability and enthusiasm to get the very best out of their colleagues and teams."

Alan Ward will also introduce new product categories into its stores, having already started selling curtains and blinds and a large collection of conservatory and garden furniture in Shrewsbury.

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The retailer has also invested in a new website project, which will boost the e-commerce side of the business, with the new site due to go live before the end of the year.

It has also identified where it could open new stores and is considering possible sites for the business in those areas.

“Alan Ward’s success is down to beautiful products, backed up by great service and expert advice, which is what sets us apart from other retailers," Mr Johnson said.

"We aim to inspire and exceed our customers’ expectations so they trust and respect the service we provide.

"Our staff are our real strength as they have years of experience, offering impartial advice to help customers find exactly what they’re looking for. I strongly believe that what we achieve by 2020 will provide the foundation for future growth and prosperity during the coming decade and beyond.”

Thom Kennedy

By Thom Kennedy
Business Editor - @tkennedy_star

Shropshire Star Business Editor

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