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Hot 100 2012 – 23: Arrowedge

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The basics

Company name: Arrowedge
What they do: Supplies pharma products to pharmacists
Headquarters: Bournemouth
The boss: Nitesh Patel

The financials

Latest turnover (£,000): 33,688
Four-year compound sales growth (%): 51
Latest Ebitda (£,000): 1,224

The details

It’s an odd fact about the economic slump that exports to the Eurozone have risen sharply. The weak pound has attracted buyers from across Europe – as Arrowedge can testify. 

The Poole firm has supplied pharmaceutical products to pharmacies since 1982, but the weak pound, combined with a tweak to the business model, lit the afterburners. Director Nitesh Patel, who owns the firm with his cousin Ullas Patel, says, “We owe a lot to the exchange rate. The pound went from €1.48 to €1.20 so exports became viable. We started to sell far more to customers from Germany, Sweden and Holland – all over the EU in fact.” Sales roared from £9.8m to £33.8m over four years

The firm also benefitted from a move from retailing to wholesaling seven years ago. For Nitesh, the success can continue as long as the pound remains competitive. “If the euro collapses, which is a possibility looking at the situation in Greece and Southern Ireland, then our prices would no longer be as attractive as they are right now.” 

Needless to say, he’s a walking advert for Sterling. “It’s fantastic news that we didn’t join the Euro. I can say that this business would not have grown like it did if we had.”

The Hot 100 2012 is brought to you by Investec, Jordans, Cass Business School and Your Business Your Future.

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