Correcting MI, reducing the cost base, so as to sell the business
Rapidly growing largest UK Independent promotional products and programmes company
The business had grown rapidly at an average of 30% annually over 11 years. There were 24 field based sales executives covering the UK, supported by a centralised sales administration, purchasing, warehousing and print facility. The company was discussing a trade sale but had not completed the implementation of a new accounting and MI system and had next to no management information.
Dealing with the departure of the FC
The business’s Financial Controller left without fully implementing the new accounting system and the accounts supervisor had resigned. The implementation of the new accounting system was completed revealing that the basis of the trade sale was flawed and the previous year’s results were overstated due to stock valuation errors. The company withdrew from negotiations. A new accounts supervisor and Finance Manager were employed.
Introduced a regular monthly reporting cycle and board report to an agreed timetable. The information provided gave margin analysis per product, per customer and per salesman in addition to debtor day analysis, order book analysis and moving annual total order analysis per channel.
Appointed a New IT Manager
Employed a new IT manager and worked with him to Introduce a new hardware platform to make best use of the new accounting and MI system. This produced daily/weekly sales analysis and a “live” credit control system which produced weekly analysis of customer queries and the speed of resolution. Each order could be tracked from receipt of order to settlement of invoice.
Management information at user level
Many of the longer serving employees understood the business but struggled with using the MI system. Developed a mentoring process of shaping the reports at user level to meet their needs.
Reducing the cost base
Worked with the board to reduce the head count by almost 50% as the MI system was rolled out and revenue was reduced due to adverse market conditions.
Completing the Trade Sale
The company was eventually sold to the original trade buyer with a clean and speedy due diligence.