Company name: A H Worth and Company
What they do: Innovative veggie grower
The boss: Duncan Worth
Latest turnover (£,000): 121,007
Four-year compound sales growth (%): 41
Latest Ebitda (£,000): 7,563
The A H Worth group of companies is a genuine phoenix from the flames story. When the vegetable grower lost two of only three major supermarket supply contracts in quick succession, the management was forced into a complete strategic rethink. The result was a “completely new approach to the stuff we grow and how we engage with the customer,” according to Simon Martin, a director at the firm. “We had to engage in all aspects of the food chain and set up a platform that allowed us to sell the whole crop.”
It embarked on an aggressive expansion plan, attracting a host of new customers including supermarkets such as Aldi, Morrisons and Asda, as well as food manufacturers and processors, and diversified its product line into prepared produce, multi-crops, organic and marketing of imported produce.
This, combined with a series of new launches and strategic acquisitions propelled AH Worth into further national and export markets, while a reinvigorated advertising strategy helped push sales past the £121m mark last year, from £43m only four years before. In 2009 the business employed 386 people, today the figure is 710.
Most recently, the business acquired Grey Friars taking it into the garlic, mushroom and sweet corn markets.
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