The decision to keep trading throughout the pandemic has certainly paid dividends for one of the UK’s largest independent companies.
Pimlico Plumbers, the well-known home services’ company based in central London, look set to register the most successful financial year in their history. Thanks to record £13m sales in each of the past two quarters, they are forecasting a 12-month turnover of £48m, when figures are released at the end of May. This would smash the previous highest total in the company’s 42-year history.
Pimlico Plumbers has already achieved sales of £40m during its current financial year. Contributing to this remarkable set of data were record sales during the final quarter of 2020, which were £13.1m, and represented an increase of £0.5m on its previous highest quarter. Within this period, Pimlico also broke its sales records for October and December, with £4.5m and £4.34m respectively. And not to be outdone, November enjoyed sales of £4.31m, which was the second highest November posting in company history.
Sales growth continued into 2021, with a record turnover of £4.13m during January. This was 3.7% higher than Pimlico‘s previous best for January, and was followed by £4.31m during February, which was up a whopping 15.3%. It all culminated in March, when the company celebrated its largest trading month ever, with figures of £4.62m. This exceeded Pimlico‘s previous record sales for a month ‘ by £100k ‘ which had been posted in November 2018.
Despite its name, Pimlico provides services far beyond the art of plumbing. It also undertakes carpentry, installs bathrooms, boilers and central heating units, along with unblocking drains, while employing skilled electricians, builders, roofers, appliance engineers and air conditioning experts. The company has certainly ‘benefitted’ from the pandemic, which forced people to spend more time at home, and thus exert additional pressure on plumbing and other domestic infrastructure.
Pimlico Plumbers has experienced increased levels of home repairs and maintenance work. And this successful year was certainly aided by its commitment to continue trading throughout the pandemic. This meant it was able to scale up and complete 10% more jobs than normal during the past 12 months. Its plumbers experienced increased levels of home repair requests, and there was a rise in the popularity of home renovations.
The company’s high profile founder and chairman, Charlie Mullins OBE, expressed his reasons why Pimlico Plumbers is becoming more popular by the year. Charlie said: We have always thrived in challenging situations and have a team of experienced people willing to adapt quickly. This has been instrumental during the past year and is represented by these record numbers.
Clearly, we have been operating in extraordinary times, but I think that the way we came to grips with the new working environment was vital. We have put in additional safety measures, like thermal scanning and routine Covid testing, as well as utilising literally tonnes on PPE and thousands of gallons of sanitiser. All of this has allowed us to continue to win more work and serve our customers.
Because we were quick to introduce health and hygiene measures, which have kept our workforce safe, it has also given customers peace of mind ‘ when allowing Pimlico engineers into their homes. This has enabled us to capture new business from customers and clients who opted to spend money, which is usually set aside for expensive holidays, on home renovations instead. People certainly spent more time at home than pre-pandemic.
As for the company’s record sales, Charlie added: These figures should give heart to businesses that are built on face-to-face customer service. With the right measures in place, and a decent dose of common sense, the death of the traditional UK economy is being greatly exaggerated.
A year ago, analysts were convinced the pandemic would sound the death knell of the high street and office-based working. But 12 months down the track I see people desperate to be with each other again. They want to eat, drink and do business face to face, rather than logging into reams of soulless video calls.
The notion that working from home is going to empty UK office space permanently is false. I suspect our high streets are about to undergo some form of renaissance. Undoubtedly we, as a company, have benefitted from people staying at home this year, while we also experienced a drop in commercial jobs. However, I expect more of a balance going forward as our business customers return to their premises.