Case Studies

Speeding up MI as interim FD of international retailer

Small start-up fabric design and distribution business with international growth

The business started in a small shop in Notting Hill in 1993, selling second-hand furniture and vintage fabrics. It soon began to design its own fabric and wallpaper, creating signature floral prints, which have come to represent a unique look.

There are now eight shops in the UK and two shops in the States (New York and Brentwood, Los Angeles). The company distributes its products to various speciality shops in the UK as well as over 500 worldwide stockists.

Dealing with the departure of the FD

The business’s Finance Director left, and we stabilised the finance department, providing guidance and coaching to the financial controller and generally boosting the department.

Speeding up the production of management information

Monthly management accounts were taking six weeks to produce, which we streamlined, and by the end of our second month, management accounts were being issued within ten working days of each month end.

Introduction of forecasting to improve cash flows

We introduced procedures that enabled the company to forecast accurately, and focused resources on key activities, including improved accuracy of weekly cash forecasts.

Our work improved planning methodology and introduced quarterly rolling 12-month forecasts giving true forward visibility, and also improved accuracy and credibility of reported numbers by resolving inconsistencies between IT systems.

Appointing a full-time successor

We spent 2-3 days a week at the company’s offices in London, and after five months were able to take a step back following the appointment of a full-time successor, recruited to bolster the full-time in-house team.

Our finance directors who have experience in this business sector include Simon Walters and Jim Halliday.