The CEO of Staffline, the Nottingham-based recruitment and training group, is “delighted with the resilience” of the business during 2020, while the firm has reported a positive first quarter for 2021, with both revenues and underlying operating profit ahead of expectations.
Underlying operating profit has increased 133% in Q1 2021 year-on-year to £1.4m, and revenue has risen slightly to £227.9m, up from £227.5m in Q1 2020.
Meanwhile, Staffline says it “delivered a robust performance in 2020, despite the impacts of Covid-19 during the period.” The firm notes this was driven by actions taken by the board to reduce costs and to focus on growth areas alongside significant progress in improving the group’s operational, financial and governance profile.
In addition, demand for staff improved across H2 2020 in the food distribution, retail, e-commerce, and logistics sectors following the easing of the first lockdown. In PeoplePlus, the business reduced its fixed cost base and moved to an online delivery model where possible, to continue to deliver skills and training services. The comprehensive restructuring programme that was implemented during 2020 resulted in all three of the group’s operating divisions returning to underlying operating profit in H2 2020.
In the year ended 31 December 2020, Staffline generated revenues of £928m (2019: restated £1,063m), delivering a 66% increase in underlying operating profit to £4.8m (2019: restated £2.9m) for continuing operations, which was ahead of expectations.
Albert Ellis, Chief Executive Officer of Staffline, said: “There is no question that 2020 was one of the most challenging periods for both industry and commerce globally, but I’m delighted with the resilience demonstrated by our business.
“We’ve yet to be fully released from the constraints of the Covid-19 restrictions but we have already seen positive signs of recovery as we exited the first quarter of 2021.
“We have made significant progress restructuring our core business, much of which was completed in 2020, and we are now well-placed to capitalise on a number of exciting growth opportunities.
“Our market leading positions across food distribution, retail, e-commerce and the logistics markets have supported our recovery. As other parts of the UK economy begin to re-emerge, I am extremely confident in our ability to build on the momentum from the start of the year.
“I look forward to providing a further update when we publish our full year results in June.”