Achieving long-term growth through diversity - From the Manor
This week we hear how a Manor Royal company, InterGo, have responded to the challenge of COVID by diversifying their business and investing in their long term growth in Crawley.
John Bardsley is Group Managing Director of the InterGo Group, a company which now holds three separate businesses, each of which are based in Manor Royal Business District – InterMedia Brand Marketing, InterSend Fulfilment and InterDirect Magazines.
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Founded by John back in 2010, the company was established to provide marketing and distribution services to independent magazine publishers. Following a period of strong growth and with an expanding team, the business relocated to its current premises at the Enterprise Centre in Manor Royal in 2016.
Since then, the company has continued to grow its portfolio of independent publisher clients, and crucially, has diversified into new markets and developed new services. John cites the strategy to diversify and build on its key strengths as having been critical, not just throughout the global pandemic, but to ensure the company is suitably positioned to capitalise on its core strengths as we look to the future and beyond the pandemic era.
2020 was set to be a celebratory year for the company, marking its 10th anniversary – a fantastic milestone for any company. However, the immediate restrictions which came into force in March necessitated the need to think and act differently and it quickly became apparent that 2020 was going to be a very memorable year for very different reasons!
John said: “I think like all businesses, the Covid pandemic was a situation facing us like no other we have ever experienced. We acted swiftly to transition to remote working, and did so with relative ease.
“We were able to maintain our services to clients who themselves were leaning on us for guidance and support. Communication was key, both internally across our team, and externally to clients.
“Of course, the impact of Covid was far from confined to individuals work lives and impacted hugely on people’s home lives and domestic arrangements too, and this is something that we were very mindful of and so worked hard to accommodate the needs and wishes of both staff and clients.
“Against a backdrop of a very difficult trading climate, particularly our retail business, we have taken a view for the long term, continuing to invest in the ongoing development of our business. At times, and with depressed revenues, this has often felt rather counter-intuitive, but we strongly believe this is the right approach for ourselves and our clients in the long run.
“We have re-branded the business, relaunched our websites, relocated InterSend, our eCommerce fulfilment operation, into much larger premises here in Manor Royal, and are now poised to launch a brand new eCommerce business, www.magazinesupermarket.co.uk which will provide consumers with an online platform to purchase subscriptions or single issues of their favourite magazines in print for next day delivery.
“As a business, we are excited and optimistic about the future.
“The whole team have worked incredibly hard throughout the last fifteen months and this very difficult period has provided us all with a lot of learnings.
“I am a big believer that we won’t find our future by looking back, and so for us, a positive outlook and continued hard work is the way forward."