Sales and jobs boost for Clearly Drinks

By Noli Dinkovski contact

- Last updated on GMT

Howard: ‘We’re looking forward to continue to grow on a national scale’
Howard: ‘We’re looking forward to continue to grow on a national scale’

Related tags: Drinks

A north-east soft drinks manufacturer says investing in people and processes has enabled it to grow revenue by 20% and staff by 50% in the last 12 months.

Sunderland-based Clearly Drinks, which produces flavoured waters, said its strong financial year was down to investing in staff across the business, with 37 new roles introduced, bringing the firm’s headcount to 113.

The outlay has enabled the team to increase production by 25%, with the plant now producing more than 1 million litres a week.

Turnover for the last 12 months had reached £18m, the company said. In its last annual report and accounts, for the year ended 31 December 2017, turnover was £14.2m. Pre-tax profit, meanwhile, was £400k – up from £150k the year before.

In addition to its branded flavoured water range, Clearly Drinks is a contract bottler for the likes of Hartridges, Get More Drinks and Sainsbury’s own-label.

Managerial changes at the company

The recruitment drive at the company has extended to managerial staff. Mick Howard, who joined Clearly Drinks as chief operating officer in March 2018, was promoted to chief executive in January 2019.

A new operations director, finance director, head of marketing, environmental co-ordinator and sales director have also joined the company in the past 12 months.

Howard said: “It’s an extremely exciting time for Clearly Drinks and we’re looking forward to continue to grow on a national scale over the coming months.

“We offer a range of our own brands as well as an industry-leading contract bottling service, but at the heart of everything is our spring water – drawn directly from our on-site boreholes into Hadrian's Well.”

Howard said the company was dedicated to ensuring that it was “constantly innovating”​ to meet the needs of customers. “We have spent that last 12 months investing in the wealth of local talent and expertise as well as developing our new and existing brands.

Water drawn from a spring

“We have always prided ourselves on creating a delicious, refreshing range made from ingredients all sourced right here in the UK, from the water (straight from our own spring) and flavours to our bottles.”

“I am also extremely proud that all our products are bottled at source, so the only travelling they do is from our plant to store, contributing to our commitment to sustainability alongside our plastic and sugar reduction strategies, as well as initiatives for the efficient use of resources, reducing our carbon footprint and alternative offset plans.”

Founded in 1885, Clearly Drinks draws spring water directly from two boreholes at the entrance of its factory in Southwick.

Its fruity and fizzy beverages contain no sugar or no added sugar, as well as no artificial colours or flavourings.

Related topics: People & Skills, Drinks

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