A Washington manufacturer of professional audio equipment has seen its profits increase to over £5m.

Reporting on its year end to 31 October 2018, Canford Group Limited has seen gross profits rise to £5.06million and net profits for the year after taxation increasing by 52 per cent despite turnover falling to £15.7million.

The Canford brand is renowned and widely respected, both for quality of service and for the diversity of stock lines on offer. Working from its headquarters in the North East of England, and supported by a wealth of in-house technical knowledge and language skills, the Canford Group incorporates metalwork manufacturing on the Isle of Portland (Dorset) and a European Sales office in Erstein, close to Strasbourg in France.

Canford operates a number of comprehensive websites which serve as the Canford catalogue. Its online presence incorporates a main website at Canford.co.uk, with French and German versions Canford.fr and Canford.de respectively providing a tailored product offering, translated and priced in local currency to meet the demands of an international market place.

The group continues to develop its own fibre termination facilities with investments in staff training and specialist equipment required for the production of its fibre camera cables for premium live television broadcasts, and heavy-duty fibre audio cables for outdoor festivals and concerts.

In the period covered by the report, Canford made a strategic decision to increase its stock holding to further improve its order fulfilment and ensure it can continue to meet customer demands throughout the possible disruption of the UK leaving the European Union. Stock was increased 15.9% to £2.85million.

Commenting in the company’s strategic report, Chairman John Francis, Chairman said: “Canford’s own brands are an important source of sales growth, with continuing high demand for both standard products and custom variations. We have gained an international reputation for producing extremely high-quality metalwork, which is now specified for audio and video connection points in many of the highest profile sports stadiums in the Middle East.

We have succeeded in growing sales margins within a competitive market so that profitability has improved despite the loss of Ash Distribution turnover. The directors are proud to report that the year ended 31st October 2018 was the group’s most profitable year to date, with profits more than double the amount achieved in the previous year. We express our thanks to our loyal staff, customers and suppliers for this achievement.”

The company acknowledges national and international uncertainty about the nature, timing and consequences of “Brexit”. Canford is an international business and the directors view this with concern. A full “Brexit Risks Review” has taken place, which has highlighted that Canford’s substantial experience in handling exports to non-EU countries stands the business in good stead for changes in the business process. Some measures to anticipate events have taken place, including acquisition of strategic stocks and discussions with logistics suppliers, and the company has set out its intention to take advantage of its long-established French subsidiary, Canford Audio SARL, to support European sales.

In its annual report, the directors confirm Canford’s on-going commitment to research and development activities in order to secure its position as a market leader in the supply of professional audio, video and data equipment.