Pentland plots relocation of business


Pentland Wholesale has revealed it is planning to relocate to a new HQ early next year and insists the move will enhance the level of service it offers dealer customers.

Recent investment in new product lines, personnel and services has helped stimulate growth at the Blackburn-based outfit, with sales so far this year up 23% on the same period in 2013.

The impending move to a new HQ just a few miles from its existing location is viewed internally as a critical element of its future strategy.

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“We identified the need to start looking for new, more modern premises to grow the business a while back, but because of the growth we have been experiencing it has become even more pressing,” explained Dean Simpson, operations manager at the company.

Pentland currently operates three sites on the same industrial park, but the new venue it has identified will bring its entire structure under one roof. It is hoping to complete the move in early 2015, when it also intends to give its brand and logo a refresh.

“The relocation is going to make us much more efficient and increase our warehouse capacity by 50%,” said Simpson.

Signs of investment are evident throughout Pentland’s business this year. It is about to add a further two vehicles to its transport fleet, while on the logistics side it has introduced a next-day delivery service.

“What we have done is utilised a manufacturing-distribution facility in Manchester to hold some of the smaller items that we can offer through this service,” explained Simpson. “It has proven to be very successful for us. You’re only talking about a small supplement to guarantee next-day receipt of a product. A lot of our distributors regard it as a big advantage to pass onto their end-users.”

Dealers that work closely with Pentland, which employs 46 staff, will most likely have noted changes in other areas, too. At the start of 2014, it appointed Paul Royds and John Bland as reps in newly-created positions aimed solely at building relationships with distributors.

Said Simpson: “They are not just there to go and sell — what we have tried to emphasise is that they are there to help with after-sales and really assist our distributors with any niggles their end-users may have. They have seen a substantial amount of customers already and if any distributors haven’t seen them and want to make an appointment then they can give us a call. But they will be getting round to seeing everybody within the next few months.”

The appointment of distributor-focused sales reps dovetails with a wider strategy to create an enhanced customer services department that incorporates after-sales support, spares sales and technical support.

“It is really an ongoing restructure that won’t be finalised until we get the new premises,” explains Simpson. “What we want to incorporate into the new premises is a much bigger trade counter and encourage more footfall from customers looking to buy from our spares department.”

For Simpson, the main message to customers — both existing and potential ones — is that if you deal with Pentland, you are dealing with a really well-established business.

“If things do go wrong — and they sometimes do — then we don’t run away, we see things through, we help people out and their warranties are safe with Pentland Wholesale, we are not going to be disappearing anywhere,” he comments. “The impression we like to try and get across is that we put our arm around anybody that comes and deals with us and look after them from start to finish.”

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Andrew Seymour

The author Andrew Seymour

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