The CEO of The Maxol Group has confirmed that diversification was at the core of the company’s growth strategy in 2020.
At a media briefing today, Brian Donaldson, who has been at the helm since 2016, also announced details of the company’s investment strategy, its food programme, immediate plans for the business, including the release of the company’s centenary book and a new loyalty programme.
The latest figures for the company showed a profit of €17.8 million for 2019, up 14% from €15.5 million on the previous year.
From 100 Years Celebration to a Global Pandemic
This year marks 100 years of business in Ireland for Maxol, and the company said that it had major plans at the outset of 2020 to celebrate the milestone.
Donaldson explained: “We had a packed schedule of celebratory activities that began with a large-scale national radio sponsorship. We had plans for our biggest ever retailer conference, events with our brand ambassador, Jacob Stockdale, and at that point, we were finalising the last chapters of our centenary book. Then the pandemic hit. As with many businesses in Ireland, the business operation and its priorities changed overnight."
“We had never seen anything like it. Within two weeks, we had invested more than €50,000 across the business in health & safety measures. Businesses had to take unprecedented measures in unprecedented times, and Maxol was no different; we reduced average serving times from three to two minutes in a massive effort to reduce time instore, along with queuing time outdoors."
"Perspex screens, enhanced cleaning, staff training and a further investment in advertising to let people know that we remained open and committed to serving communities safely ran side by side with our daily operations,” Donaldson said.
Meanwhile, the company’s deli offering, a key focus of the business in its expansion strategy, had to be adapted quickly; fuel sales plummeted, and all eat-in dining options had to be suspended.
“Eight months on, aided by the fact that Maxol is an adaptable and agile business, the dust has settled somewhat and we are fortunate in that we have nonetheless been in a position to make some exciting announcements and implement positive changes,” he added.
There are more than 1,000 people employed indirectly across the group (North and South) including at its 237 forecourts.
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