During a challenging 12 months, Hoppecke Industrial Batteries saw a significant uplift in UK sales against the backdrop of a market downturn. The market for motive power batteries was down around 25% in 2020/21. However, Hoppecke bucked the trend, growing sales by more than 15% over the previous year.
General Manager Stuart Browne says: “It’s been a tough year, and like everyone, we’ve had to adapt. We’ve coped well and our achievement is due, in part, to some key strategic planning to mitigate any fall out from Brexit. However, it’s largely thanks to a team effort to pull together and support customers throughout the pandemic.”
Coronavirus put the spotlight on logistics and its vital influence on the UK’s economic fortunes. This was especially evident as wholesalers and producers worked with supermarkets to keep the shelves stocked. At the same time, consumers got accustomed to shopping online for just about anything. In general, the pandemic has given people cause to think about logistics, particularly how products get from A to B. It’s clear that carriers and haulage firms are increasingly important to supply chain success.
Hoppecke implemented robust plans to ensure it was well-prepared for Brexit. Over the course of 2020 the company geared up to ensure a seamless transition. As a result, it was business as usual from 1 January 2021. Maintaining good stock levels throughout the year ensured an uninterrupted supply of motive power batteries and chargers for Hoppecke’s UK customers.
This approach also meant that, whatever the outcome of trade talks with the European Union, Hoppecke could satisfy customer requirements. Bringing in extra stock in the months leading up to Christmas avoided delays at the ports so products were readily available. In fact, these preparations enabled Hoppecke to achieve over 200% of its motive power batteries sales target for the month of December.
All employees at Hoppecke’s UK headquarters in Staffordshire have been retained, boosting business stability. The company has also taken on temporary workers in its busy warehouse. During lockdowns and the various tiered restrictions, the Hoppecke team has focussed on supporting customers. Some staff in administrative roles have been working remotely but by implementing appropriate measures to keep people safe, the production team has continued working on site.
Stuarts adds: “As a nation we’re really getting to grips with the pandemic and I believe we’ve overcome the biggest challenges.
“Hoppecke is committed to battery assembly, sales, rental, refurbishment and servicing in the UK for the long term and we’re upbeat about the future. We’re hoping for a less volatile 2021/22 and look forward to seeing those businesses most severely impacted by Covid-19 bounce back.”
In 2020/2021 Hoppecke Industrial Batteries posted a year-on-year increase of more than 15% for motive power battery sales.