Jestic’s annual report covers the 12 months to 30 September 2018, so it doesn’t take into account the fact that the business was sold to the South African firm Universal Industries International in April this year.
With Jestic’s management team remaining on board following takeover, the business has powered forward under its new owner, signing exclusive distribution deals with new vendors and even making an acquisition itself in the shape of Manchester-based Malibu Corporation.
That takeover not only gives it access to a portfolio of products, including heavy duty griddles, ice cream machines and drawers, but gives the Kent-based outfit a firm presence in the north of England.
Top brass at Universal would have pored over Jestic’s 2018 accounts when conducting their due diligence and in doing so they would have found a business in rude health after delivering yet another year of profit growth.
A dip in revenue during the year, from £21.9m to £21.2m, invariably tells a story of the challenges facing the market but with operating profit climbing 4% to £2.6m, Jestic’s directors were more than satisfied with its performance.
As one of the industry’s largest foodservice equipment exporters – the majority of products it supplies are sourced from the USA and Europe – Jestic has had to manage Brexit-induced currency volatility more carefully than most.
Its accounts certainly give a nod to that, with the company’s directors noting their intention to take a cautious approach to exposure to foreign exchange fluctuations in the current financial year by committing to forward contracts protecting a minimum price for its currency requirements.
Turnover: £21.15m (-3%)
Operating profit: £2.66m (+4%)
Employees: 95 (93)
Directors that served during the year: M Beesley, B Dale, T Fitzgibbon (resigned 07/18), M Eyre, N Pearson (appointed 05/18), S Morris (appointed 05/18 2018)
Ownership: The ultimate controlling part of the company at the time the accounts were published was MR Beesley Esq, but in April 2019, notification was given that Jestic UK Bidco Limited became a ‘person with significant control’ following its sale to Universal Industries International.
Financial year end: 30 September 2018