Thursday, June 21, 2018

News: Planet X on track with a focus on profits

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Profits are up at Planet X following two years of restructuring at the Rotherham-based specialist in providing bikes at no-nonsense prices.

Originally founded by keen triathlete Dave Loughran in the 1990's, Planet X now sells over 10,000 bicycle products worldwide and employs 60 staff. It designs and sells under its own Planet X, On One and Titus brands. It has also acquired the respected Holdsworth and Viner brands, relaunching them by manufacturing the bikes in the UK and Italy.

For the year ending March 2018, turnover was £15m, down from the highs of £20m in previous years due to the company's strategy of focusing on the most profitable areas of the business and improving operational efficiencies. A number of redundancies were reported in 2016.

Now profit before tax for the year has risen from £1.1m to £1.8m, a 64% increase on the previous year.

With a showroom at Templeborough, Planet X previously invested in new 47,000 sq ft warehouse facilities across Rotherham, at Aldwarke.

Loughran has recently been working with Trevor Parker, chairman of strategy execution experts, NorthCo Management, to drive forward the business and support its growth ambitions. The focus is on reaching a wider consumer base online and on designing and developing its core product range.

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Dave Loughran, chief executive at Planet X, said: "Our strategy to focus upon great quality at sensible prices really resonates with an ever-savvy customer base. We are very excited with the growth opportunities of the business as we resurrect some iconic cycling brands."

Trevor Parker, chairman of NorthCo Management, added: "Planet X's profit margins are a real indicator of how the business has responded to our operational restructuring programme.

"Our focus has been on simplifying Plant X's business model in order to create a robust direct to consumer distribution platform, placing Planet X in prime position to take advantage of market opportunities as they arise. The adage of turnover is vanity, profit is sanity and cash is king is very fitting. Turnover has been sacrificed for an impressive rise in profit.

"In addition, the impact of our continued work at Planet X on the balance sheet over the year has seen us pay down debt of £2.8m so that we are now debt free and despite significant dividends being paid, cash reserves have improved by over £400k to £1.7m."

One highlight for Planet X was bringing Holdsworth, a prominent professional bike racing team of the 1970's, back to professional racing. The team secured a coveted place on the recent Tour de Yorkshire.

Planet X website

Images: Planet X / holdsworth

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