Latest News at SPAR
- SPAR Brings Christmas Cheer to Marie Curie
- SPAR Store Manager Receives New Years Honour
- £60K jackpot for SPAR customers in N England in 2021
- SPAR on store recruitment drive in North of Scotland
- Free P.E. resources to get children active during lockdown
- Certas Energy acquires Seven Forecourts in the North East
- SPAR wholesaler launches new store in Cumbria
- CJ Lang wins Environment Award
- SPAR Natural makes GB debut
- The Beast from the East brings out the best in team SPAR Scotland
- SPAR Scotland first retailer to Cook with Welby
- 6,000 home deliveries dispatched from Quinn's SPAR
- SPAR Scotland gives cash back to Communities
- Too Good To Go in 275 Stores
- Airdrie retailer becomes part of the SPAR Scotland family
- Ambitious young retailer takes home Asian Trader award.
- SPAR delivers landmark 1 million pieces of PPE
- Celebrating female role models in sport
- SPAR Scotland raises £59k for Marie Curie
- AFB Launch Charity Campaign
- SPAR Coylton looks bigger and better
- SPAR Scotland extends its Snappy Shopper network
- SPAR Scotland rolls out new food-to-go brand, CJ's
- £10k Quids In Winner Announced
- SPAR's Virtual Conference
- SPAR Haworth re-opens
- SPAR Wins Big
- The future of convenience is with SPAR
- SPAR Scotland & Scottish FA
- Wellbank welcomes SPAR store
- SPAR Scotland unveils new lorry designed by 8 year old
- Community Cashback Winners Announced
- SPAR Moffat Driven to Success
- SPAR Scotland Ready For More
- SPAR Scotland Launches Euros Campaign
- Record Sales with CJ's
- SPAR Scotland trials fruit campaign
- The First SPAR UK Fresh Concept Store Opens in NI
- SPAR Scotland launch driver apprenticeship scheme
- Blakemore Retail Launches First SPAR Market Store
- Roadchef chooses EDGEPoS for its SPAR stores
- SPAR celebrates opening in Blantyre
- CJ Lang Receives RoSPA Award
- SPAR MD Louise Hoste Announced as New Chair of ACS
- The Convenience Awards 2021 winners revealed
- Award Winning Spirits
- Luxury Mince Pies Win BBC Good Food Award
- Healthy Living Programme
- SPAR Sandwiches Passes £600k for Marie Curie
- A.F. Blakemore & Son Well Positioned for Growth
- SPAR renews sponsorship of Lancashire School Games
- New SPAR and Shell forecourt opens
- SPAR signs deal with Burnley FC
Chairman Peter Blakemore has announced a year of good progress for 2020/21 in his statement on A.F. Blakemore & Son Ltd’s annual financial results.
A.F. Blakemore’s group sales for the financial year ending on 24 April 2021 declined by 5% from the previous year, falling from £1.053bn to £1.001bn.
The company’s foodservice and wholesale customers across the travel, tourism, leisure and educational sectors were heavily disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic, but A.F. Blakemore’s multi-channel strategy enabled the business to meet changing demands and utilise its workforce to good effect.
Pre-tax profits remained in line with the previous year at £6.1m due to effective cost control and stable margin performance, while shareholders’ funds and net assets grew significantly from £85.7m to £98.6m.
Peter Blakemore commented: “I am pleased to report that the company made good progress during the period to 24 April 2021, when the business had to meet a full year of unprecedented challenges caused by the Covid‑19 pandemic.
“As a result of great customer service and an investment in pricing, we enjoyed good sales across our community-based SPAR convenience stores, with consumers shopping more locally, and whilst less frequently, with a higher basket spend.
“Our teams worked hard to maintain robust service levels both in-store and across our distribution network throughout the financial year.”
A.F. Blakemore has continued to invest during the past eighteen months as part of its commitment to growing a sustainable business for the future.
In the summer, the company launched a purpose-built, 165,000sq ft distribution depot in Bedford that will provide the cornerstone of future infrastructure and logistics capability. The multi-temperature, energy-efficient site has provided the business with additional supply-chain capacity to better serve customers in London and South East England.
Across its SPAR retail estate, A.F. Blakemore has continued to implement its store cluster strategy, which aims to deliver store propositions aligned to the needs of consumers, with a focus on food for now and food for later. The business has expanded its home delivery service across company-owned stores and continued the rollout of its own-brand County Bridge fresh meat range to independent retailers.
In recognition of the changing needs of its commercial customers, A.F. Blakemore has also invested in new online ordering platforms, driven by machine learning and artificial intelligence, for SPAR retailers, Wholesale Distribution customers and Foodservice customers.
The company has continued to play a key role in supplying essential services to local communities. The manager of A.F. Blakemore’s Laceby Lodge SPAR store, Linda Carrington, received a British Empire Medal in The Queen’s New Year Honours for exceptional services in her area.
A continued focus on the group’s environmental impact saw A.F. Blakemore reduce its energy and fuel consumption by 9% in 2020/21 and cut carbon emissions by 13%.
Despite market volatility, sales in the first quarter of 2021/22 were 12% ahead of the prior year as a result of the solid retention of convenience store volumes, the strong recoverability of Covid-impacted channels and growth from new customer accounts.
Blakemore said: “As a result of our strong sales performance and investment in our infrastructure, I believe that the business is well positioned to navigate the current supply chain challenges and to deliver our growth aspirations.
“I would like to thank colleagues, customers and supply partners for their hard work and support throughout the past year in ensuring we have both the expertise and resilience to supply food and services to the communities that we serve in these everchanging times.”
Find your local SPAR