A BOOST in exports by Yorkshire manufacturers, coupled with strong international sales, have put freight forwarders Zenith International on track to achieve record turnover of £30m this year.
Direct selling of the Bradford-based company’s global freight forwarding services to clients in Europe, the Far East, Canada and the United States has increased international sales by 68 per cent to £5m in two years.
“We travel the world in search of new business,” said director Colin Usher, who launched Zenith International Freight with colleagues Phillip Bell and John Lambert 13 years ago.
He added: “Our business has increased by almost 15 per cent since April so we fully expect turnover to exceed £30m this financial year.”
Much of this growth underscores encouraging trends. Many of the company’s clients in the Bradford district and elsewhere in the region are exporting more, including food, textiles, machinery, electronic equipment and engineering components.
Around 75 per cent of the company’s business comes from worldwide air or sea freight with the balance from pan-European freight forwarding.
Most air freight is shipped through Leeds Bradford or Manchester airports using a range of airlines, for whom Zenith are a big cargo customer.
“We are an international company based on strong Yorkshire values,” said Mr Usher. “Our clients, large and small, include local, national and international businesses who need our specialised services and know they can speak to one of the Zenith team in person, day or night, whatever their time zone.”
Zenith was listed as one of Britain’s fastest growing international companies in the latest Sunday Times/HSBC “top 200” league table, based on last year’s turnover. The company came in at number 66 in the national league table.
Exports from Yorkshire and the Humber climbed to a value of £4.43bn in the last quarter, up 4.5 per cent on the previous three months and boosted by the Asian and North American markets.
The figure for the three months to the end of June was up from £4.24bn for the first quarter of the year and up from £3.93bn for the same period last year.
Yorkshire and the Humber was the only northern region to show second quarter growth, with export values decreasing in the North East and North West.
The statistics from HM Revenue & Customs show that machinery and transport equipment, mineral fuels and chemicals are the key export commodities for the region.