In early FY2016, we launched a five-year plan with the target of doubling EBITDA over the subsequent five years.
Within the five-year plan, we have a number of strategic initiatives that we believe will drive this growth. These initiatives are continuously monitored for progress and are reviewed at regular intervals by the Board. As we move forward some initiatives are completed, others evolve into new areas and dynamically shift while others are brought forward, approved and incorporated into our strategy.
Whilst we set strategic plans, our goal is to run the best business we possibly can and not to fall into the trap of rigidly managing a strategic plan rather than a dynamic business.
The most important initiatives within the latest plan in terms of impact over the five-year period are:
In our Films Division – expanding the sales of specialist sacks, liners and pouches.
We have an excellent range of products, particularly at Flexipol, some of which are patented. There are good opportunities to expand the range, service existing key accounts more fully and penetrate new key accounts with these products. Over the last two years, we have:
- Added sales capacity at Flexipol and Palagan
- Added Synpac’s range of barrier film pouches
- Added film extrusion and bag conversion capacity at Flexipol
- Introduced some new product capabilities.
Although some further investment will be needed, this initiative has received considerable resources over the last two years and the priority is now the achievement of sales growth supported by efficient operational performance.
Developing new bearings projects with major OEMs and bringing already won business successfully into production.
Our bearings business has long project gestation periods, with up to five years between tool order and product sales at full run rate. The current pipeline of business that is won but not yet into full production stands at £5.0 million of annualised sales value, all of which should come through over the next three to five years. Further project opportunities with key accounts are in the pipeline for conversion. The initiative hinges on good key account management and development as well as clever design engineering and technical support, activities that our bearings business is increasingly effective at.
Developing new business in mandrels globally through the provision of in-depth technical service and product customization.
Our mandrel business has a highly successful business model based on technical expertise and a wide range of solutions for hose manufacturers – the list of potential prospects is substantial. Over the last two years we have recruited additional sales and R&D resource, and added capacity in this business to enable us to deepen our competencies and to exploit this opportunity fully. We need to continue to support this business with further capacity, some of which needs to be in the US.
Forward integration and product range diversification in matrix.
There is an opportunity in our creasing matrix activities for profitable growth by getting closer to box-makers and die-makers in the packaging and print consumables industry and by producing a wider range of products and moving forward into consumables distribution. We have established direct distribution in the UK where we are market leader, we have invested in CCM, a US matrix and consumables business, and in Mito, a consumables distributor in Italy. We have expanded our downstream activities in India, and we have taken control of sales and distribution in the Shanghai region in China. In addition, we also have a stream of new die-making and box-making products being launched, some of which are patented.