Industrial supplier looks to the future beyond lockdown

Scotland’s largest independent industrial supply group is set for future success beyond the Covid-19 disruption, after receiving long-term support in the form of a seven-figure funding package. 

Highland Industrial Supplies, provider of tools, equipment, materials and PPE for the agriculture and fencing, construction, civil engineering, health and hospitality sectors, saw its income significantly drop in the 72 hours after lockdown measures were announced by the government.

The business, headquartered in Inverness, has depots in Orkney, Fort William, Elgin, Turriff, Perth and Dundee, all of which were forced to close when the government advised people to stay home. To ensure consumers could still access essential items during lockdown - including cleaning supplies, PPE and vital products for the farming and construction industries - the business set up click and collect options and an “essentials-only” delivery service.

To safeguard cashflow during the pandemic and place the business in the best financial position to protect itself during uncertain times, Highland Industrial Supplies were, with our support, able to secure a seven-figure funding package. The package was designed to support the long-term future of the business, and included term-loan finance, increased working capital and funding via the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). 

The road ahead

As a result of the relationship between Highland Industrial Supplies and Bank of Scotland, the business has set itself up for long-term success. 

Garry Mackintosh, director of Highland Industrial Supplies, said: “Our customers come from a variety of sectors, many of which have been hit hard by the pandemic. For example, the goods we provide for the hospitality sector were no longer required as most hotels and restaurants had to shut their doors when lockdown was announced. The lack of orders resulted in an almost immediate halt to most of our expected income from that sector from the end of March onwards.

“Thanks to our long-term support with Bank of Scotland, we have the comfort of the cashflow needed for us to continue progressing with our long-term plans. We also adapted our traditional sales model and focused on click and collect orders for those still requiring our goods and services, ensuring we could still meet the demand from our customers. We’re now starting to see sales in some sectors returning to normal levels, and we look forward to decades longer in business.”

Graeme Keen, relationship director at Bank of Scotland, said: “Highland Industrial Supplies is a prominent Scottish business that’s been operating for more than 35 years, and one of our long-term clients. It plays a key role in the supply chain of hundreds of businesses and relies on many of Scotland’s key sectors that have been impacted most by the pandemic.”

“It’s an extremely challenging time for businesses across the country, but we will continue to support firms as they adapt and adjust to the changing needs of consumers.”

Graeme Keen, relationship director

Industrial supplier looks to the future beyond lockdown

Manufacturing

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