Stepping up to the mark when a pandemic no one could have predicted set the ecommerce sector rocketing served to showcase the growth and development of Panther Logistics over recent years.
A decision, ten years ago, to focus solely on premium, last-mile delivery was a true game-changer and that, combined with the input and expertise of Head of Sales and Marketing, Samuel Scott, who has been responsible for onboarding 115 new clients who between them are set to generate over £7m of income, steered the Northampton firm towards two wins in the Northamptonshire Logistics Awards.
Samuel was named Achiever of the Year, while Panther Logistics picked up the Growth Company of the Year Award at the awards ceremony at the Royal and Derngate in September.
Today, Panther boasts an impressive customer base including Wayfair, Silentnight, Dunelm, Asda, Pets at Home, Samsung, Decathlon and LG, and covers the UK via a network of ten strategically located regional hubs, operating a fleet of 100 vehicles and 112 trailers and employing a workforce of 460 with the flexibility to expand to more than 800 during peak periods.
In the past 24 months, Panther has extended its offering with the introduction of a complete end-to-end solution to include storage and fulfilment – accommodating the increasing trend of customers wishing to reduce their stockholding – a move which has resulted in a significant number of business wins. Panther’s main warehouse facility, situated in Castleford, has the capacity to hold up to 30,000 pallets.
Turnover levels have soared, with Panther beating its projected turnover of £58m in 2020 by 20% to finish the year just shy of £70m.And, with a projected turnover of £83m for 2021, Panther is on course to achieve an impressive 30% growth in just two years.
Against a backdrop of continuous investment, including acquisition by AIT at the end of 2020, Panther has introduced significant improvements to cater for the ever-increasing demand. AIT is a US-based international freight forwarder and adding Panther’s next day, white-glove two-man delivery to AIT’s global freight operation was the perfect fit and represents enormous potential for both operators.
Panther has bucked the trend by increasing its workforce by 15% since the beginning of the pandemic, as well as expanding its national depot network with the opening of two new sites in Warrington and Bridgewater as well as investing £2.3m in an additional 70 vehicles and trailers.
Award-winner Samuel Scott said:
“I joined the business during Black Friday week in 2019. It was an absolutely crazy time but it gave me the chance to see immediately how all the different aspects of the business operated and how they responded to activity in the market during that week. It gave me the chance to identify areas of strength and weakness and to start to look at what else we could offer.
“Panther’s growth over the last two years has largely been made possible by a company culture of dedication to providing customers with the best service possible through innovative service offerings – an ethos which starts with the board and cascades down throughout the operation.
“We aim to keep an open mind, and just because we don’t already do something, doesn’t mean we can’t adapt our business model and make it happen. A lot of that has been driven by Gary McKelvey, who took over as Managing Director when Panther was acquired by AIT at the end of 2020, and he’s honed the business to push on from there.
“The pandemic altered consumer delivery expectations and the ecommerce sector boomed. We took the decision to carry on working at full capacity. We didn’t take our foot off the gas because we knew we had support throughout the business to keep going and serve our customers.
“We were able to do that because we had the right processes in place. Since I’d started, I’d stripped the processes back to basics and we were taking a little bit longer to get things right with our customers, but that was worth it in the end, because we were more profitable and we were ready to react to change.
“When the pandemic struck, it was a steep learning curve as we were handling record volumes with the same infrastructure and individuals. I am very proud to have won Achiever of the Year, but I also know that the award is absolutely a testament to everyone in this business who pulled together to make things happen.”
Contact Panther Logistics on 01604 215000 or visit the website www.panthergroup.co.uk