- Hugo Walker
Samworth Brothers sees sales surge as it recuperates from the lockdown years
Samworth Brothers, the Leicestershire-based owner of household name brands such as Ginsters, Soreen, Higgidy and Urban Eat, has welcomed an uptick in its sales as a sign of recuperation from the rocky years of Covid lockdowns.
Whereas the Food to Go giant made a worrying loss of £31.6 million in 2020, a strong performance in 2021 saw its profits shoot to £17 million. Meanwhile, an impressive turnover of almost £1.2 billion in 2021 saw its performance more or less match its pre-pandemic revenue from 2019.
A spokesperson for the company commented: "Although 2021 was still a challenging year due to continued lockdowns and the enduring pandemic, our key food-to-go business staged a good recovery to end the year only marginally behind 2019 volumes. Sales have continued to increase in 2022."
Despite the positive post-pandemic performance, Samworth's are carefully considering new obstacles: "It was clear from the autumn of 2021 that inflation was going to be the next big challenge," the spokesperson added, "We are working hard to mitigate the impact of inflation through dialogue with customers, price recovery mechanisms, efficiencies and collaboration with suppliers."
The strong performance comes in the wake of a string of investments over the past few years, such as the purchase of the majority share capital of Higgidy Pies.
Aside from business investments, the family business has a number of community initiatives across Leicestershire.
"Building on our efforts during the pandemic, we are playing a significant role within our communities to help reduce food insecurity. In partnership with Leicester City Council, we have been able to use a combination of our surplus food, manufacturing and distribution capabilities, and relationships with organisations such as food surplus retailer, The Company Shop, to help feed vulnerable children and their families during the school holidays.
In May 2021, for instance, we worked in partnership with the council and Leicester City Football Club on a holiday food programme which provided families with all the ingredients they needed to make five tasty lunches at home, together with simple instructions for making the meals.
More recently, we have supported a 'Pop-Up Pantry' holiday programme in Leicester where eligible families can collect staple foods to ensure children have breakfast, lunch and dinner options over the holiday breaks."