Business Resilience 2021

16 September 2021

Kanes Foods Limited

Kanes Foods had successfully delivered a turnaround programme in 2020, arresting cash losses of £1m a month in 2018/19 to post a modest cash profit in YE March 2020. However, celebrations were short lived with the first Covid-19 lockdown hitting only weeks later, reducing salad bowl volumes by 70% and overall company revenue by 35% overnight.

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After two years of transformational activity, during which headcount was halved, operational footprint was reduced, and overheads were cut by 40%, the business was forced to initiate another rapid response. Key stakeholders, including customers and lenders, were quick to provide support as the business mobilised quickly to flex costs down further. Production lines were temporarily mothballed, shift patterns changed, staff furloughed, all while maintaining high levels of customer service to customers. At the same time, the business had to prepare for the UK’s exit from the EU Customs Union, taking place when half of all Kanes raw materials could only be sourced effectively from Continental Europe.

The threat of a Covid-19 outbreak also represented a real risk to business continuity. The company worked closely with Government Agencies to devise and enact a programme of measures to reduce the risk of workplace transmission and protect their 850 staff.

Despite this significant test of resilience to the newly re-focused business model, Kanes has continued to make solid progress, posting further improvements in EBITDA from reduced revenues and maintaining high levels of quality and service to customers.