Anglia has made a flying start towards its stated ambition of achieving £100m turnover in the next five years. “It’s a stretch,” concedes Steve Rawlins, Anglia’s CEO. “We are looking at a CAGR of 13.5% to achieve it, though 10% would be a good result. This year business is cracking and sales are already 17% up on last year and we could hit 20% by year end.”
Rawlins says that the target can be achieved with the current line card and without acquisitions, though “if one came along at the right price and was the right fit we’d look at it.”
The one investment will be in field applications engineers. “We want to add six to eight to the FAE team,” says Rawlins. “It’s not easy to find the right people, lots of graduate these days are software-oriented, and they need to have customer relationship savvy. We’ve hired two, so far, both older guys boasting the right expertise. Engineers like to talk engineer to engineer. To be honest it’s the only thing that could hold us back. Hiring FAEs is top of my ‘to do’ list.”
“Our suppliers invest time and effort with training us and we want to support them,” he added.
Rawlins is partly a victim of circumstances affecting the distribution sector as acquisitions and reshaped business models make the headlines.
“Suppliers and customers have been asking what is our five year plan, and it’s understandable. Our sales are £60.8m which represents 5% of the UK and Ireland Distributor Total Available Market, and our growth is constantly ahead of the market (DTAM) so we are a substantial player,” Rawlins observes.
One other potential obstacle is shortage of parts. “Passive components are a particular problem. I’ve not seen it like this before,” says Rawlins. “It’s not just tantalum capacitors, it’s chip resistors, chip capacitors too. Our approach is to ensure supply to regular customers.”
Rawlins kept Anglia head of the game last year. “We were hearing views out in the market that indicated an upturn was on the way so we made a substantial investment in stock last September.”
The distributor’s Anglia Sigma initiative has also been welcomed by customers. “It is a free dashboard which provides analysis of forward, current and historical orders and enquiries, as well as a vendor rating feature showing Anglia’s delivery performance,” explains Rawlins.
“This allows customers to directly measure our service. We have challenged our competitors to publish their delivery performance figures which they have so far failed to do. “
“Customers lap it up,” adds Rawlins. “They’ve not seen anything like it before.”
“We have challenged our competitors to publish their delivery performance figures but as far as I know none have.”