Gifts Today magazine

Portmeirion Group wins Queen’s Award

British tableware company Portmeirion Group has been awarded The Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the category of International Trade

Portmeirion Group, the AIM listed manufacturer and worldwide distributor of household goods has secured The Queen’s Award for Enterprise, which recognises the Group’s continuous growth in overseas sales and overall outstanding achievement in international trade over the last six years.

The Award, consisting of a Grant of Appointment, will be presented by the Lord Lieutenant of Staffordshire at Portmeirion Group’s offices later this year.

Portmeirion has enjoyed a seventh consecutive year of record sales in 2015 with revenues and earnings being driven to their highest ever levels. Revenues increased by 11.9 per cent to £68.7 million, while profit before tax increased 13.6 per cent to an all-time high of £8.6 million.

The Group was able to grow its dividend for the seventh consecutive year, which increased by 13.2 per cent from 2014 to 30.00p. The Group has improved its sales in the UK and the US, the largest overseas market which represents nearly a third of its sales, and has also enjoyed revenue growth in Asia. India, in particular, has seen exceptional growth due primarily to the wedding gift market.

Portmeirion’s brands share a long and illustrious history which stretches back to the mid-eighteenth century with Spode and Royal Worcester. Portmeirion Botanic Garden is a major pattern with a worldwide following. Since its launch in 1972 it has continued to evolve and grow, with sales last year over £33 million. A conservative estimate would be that over 50 million pieces of Botanic Garden are still in use and on display all over the world. Spode Christmas Tree is the Group’s second largest pattern; launched in 1938, its main market is in the United States where it consistently achieves sales in excess of $10 million per annum.

2016 marks the 200th anniversary of the launch of Spode’s Blue Italian design, Portmeirion Group’s oldest continuously produced pattern. The traditional cobalt design’s annual sales exceed £1.5 million.

Contradicting a more general market move to overseas production, Portmeirion Group has grown its manufacturing in the UK to ensure a competitive advantage through knowledge and authentication of its British brands. The company has installed a new kiln within timescale and budget which is now fully commissioned and has just started to increase production by some 20,000 best quality pieces per week. In 2015 the Group attained Investors in People silver level and became the first company in the UK to be awarded with the new Investment in Young People (IiYP) award.

Commenting on the award, Dick Steele, Chairman of Portmeirion Group says: "Portmeirion Group's 700 employees based in the United Kingdom and in the United States of America are honoured to receive this award. Portmeirion, Spode and Royal Worcester are global brands and our fine tableware has been gracing homes throughout the world for over 250 years. The Spode Blue Italian pattern celebrates its 200th anniversary this year, testament to our continuing commitment to quality, utility and beauty."

Phil Atherton, Group Sales & Marketing Director, says: “Portmeirion Group has been a major UK success story in the exporting of products to many international markets. Our diversified product range, supply base, wide markets and people are the key to our success. This award for excellence is great recognition for our skills and brands.”

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