Swallowfield plc churns out 7 million fashionable foamburst shower gels for Imperial Leather every year at its Wellington site. It’s their biggest line and is one of many cosmetic and beauty products paving the way for the turnaround in fortunes of the company in the past year led by Chief Executive, Chris Howe. He welcomed Rebecca Pow, Prospective MP for Taunton Deane to the factory to discuss the recent positive announcements:
‘This has been a really important year for us, we have moved from loss making to profitability in 2012/13. We have worked very hard on our cost base, have changed our shift pattern so that it fits better with demand and we have worked hard to win new customers which include Walgreens and Joico in the US and new business in China. We want to build on this and continue to develop sustainable growth,’ said Chris.
New staff have been taken on so that the workforce now totals 320 in Wellington with a further 120 in Bideford. Mr Howe explained that the general turn around in the economy as a whole has helped fuel the drive towards improved profitability too as well as a shift towards UK manufacturing as labour costs escalate in Asia together with the benefits of material costs stabilising worldwide.
‘I was delighted to go into the factory and see the production lines for myself’ says Rebecca Pow, ‘this is a key business in Wellington and it is excellent news that profitability has improved and business is on the up which can only be further good news for the town which provides a much valued work force. I understand that the business intends to remain rooted here and I will do all that I can to ensure it is given the right support to make it fit for purpose as we go forward. I urge the Council and the Local Enterprise Partnership to work with Swallowfield to nurture the business too.’