A specialist fulfilment firm has invested in cloud technology and put a new team in place as it aims to achieve 50 per cent turnover growth in the year since its recent acquisition.
Gloucester-based print and mail specialists Alpha Response bought The Fulfilment Warehouse in Bourton-on-the-Water in May this year as it consolidated its movement towards e-commerce.
And with four significant contracts already secured since the acquisition, a new team has been put in place at The Fulfilment Warehouse as the busy Christmas period approaches.
A recent project completed at the 10,000 sqft warehouse at Bourton Industrial Park involved the storage, order processing, packing and distribution of 65,000 promotional Christmas items for a major cosmetics supplier.
Now with a Sarah Street recently promoted to operations director, Clare Stubbs hired as customer relations administrator and Abby Hutton taken on as the first apprentice on a new scheme, the business is ready to take on more work in the run-up to the festive season.
Ms Stubbs will spearhead the growth of the fulfilment side of the business – the remainder of The Fulfilment Warehouse’s turnover comes through contract packing – and using the new software system to fulfil customer orders.
New clients include a Gloucester-based importer of a natural laundry detergent from South Africa, a Wiltshire-based mechanical lubricant firm, a fine foods company in the Cotswolds and pressure washer company in Worcester.
John Orchard is marketing manager at Alpha Response, the Gloucester-based print and mail specialist firm which acquired The Fulfilment Warehouse in May.
He said: “As companies selling physical goods go increasingly online, they are looking to fulfilment companies to do the hard graft for them – taking the items off a shelf, packing them into boxes and sending them out.
“Our existing client base demonstrates how The Fulfilment Warehouse is perfectly set up to serve a huge range of businesses. With the new appointments we have made and the systems we have installed we are now well placed to expand our current operation further.
“The cloud-based software also gives our clients control so they can see what stock they have, as well as integrating with online sales channels like Amazon. It’s clever stuff and makes life much easier for our clients, especially around Black Friday, Christmas and the New Year sales.”
Mr Orchard said the development of the team was in part reflecting greater demand for fulfilment services and also predicting further growth.
“It has been six months since Alpha Response acquired the Fulfilment Warehouse and we are almost on track to meet our 50 per cent growth target in the first year,” he said.
“With extra clients coming on board for fulfilment, and the existing contract packing work, Sarah’s promotion reflects the extra workload our staff are facing.
“Claire has come in to manage that fulfilment growth and Abby, who has been with us for a while but hasn’t had any formal training yet, is the first person to go on our new apprenticeship scheme.”
“The new structure, of both systems and personnel, will enable the company to handle double the orders it could previously, so it’s an exciting time for everyone here.”
The Fulfilment Warehouse turned over just under £500,000 in its most recent complete financial year, employing a mix of 20 full and part time staff.
The company was set up in 1999 by founder and previous owner David Johnston, who retired from the business prior its acquisition to Alpha Response in May.