Losses cut at Aulds as baker looks to the future
BAKER Aulds has narrowed losses and increased revenue in its most recent accounts.
And with rationalisation of its retail business now complete, chief executive Alan Marr believes a brand refresh in the spring will mark a new chapter for Aulds’ shops.
Sales for the year to March 31 at the Greenock business grew one per cent to £15 million as pre-tax losses narrowed to £136,454 from £486,928 the previous year.
Noting the improvement in performance, Mr Marr said: “It takes a while, we made losses for a number of years, but it’s going in the right direction.”
Mr Marr, whose great grandfather founded the business in 1900, said the company’s foodservice division, Delicious Desserts – which is distributed through wholesalers or directly to larger restaurant groups – had continued to grow since the reporting period ended and would be up “significantly” in the current year.
The company is down to 27 retail outlets, from a peak of 44 around five years ago. Mr Marr said shops in “the wrong” locations were closed, and that a decision was still to be made on one more. “It is now a case of building and going forward,” said Mr Marr.
A deal to supply Scotmid stores with fresh bakery products has grown to 51 stores, providing some balance and helping to move the business away from what Mr Marr called “total reliance on the high street”.
However, Mr Marr said that while the business was in better shape, and had seen staff numbers grow to about 500 as production workers more than offset a reduction in retail staff, there would be challenges around increased Saturday, 14th January, 2017