Rix Premium
Rory Clarke, MD of J.R. Rix & Sons.
Rebecca Wayman

Hull family business celebrates 21% turnover and revenue increase to £500m

Family business J.R. Rix & Sons Ltd has reported a 21 per cent rise in turnover in 2018.

This is said to be due to the integration of two new fuel businesses and the fluctuating price of oil.

The company, headquartered on Spyvee Street in Hull, saw an increase in group revenue from £407m in 2017, to £496m in 2018 as oil prices peaked at key trading times.

Rix Petroleum, the largest business in the group, accounted for 70 per cent of the growth in group revenue, rising from £304m to £366m.

As well as the rising oil price, the result reflects the impact of two acquisitions - North Yorkshire-based Stones Fuel Oils at the end of 2017, and Wynnstay Fuels Ltd, which the company bought in mid-2018.

Like-for-like volumes rose just 3.3 per cent, mainly as a result of the new depots coming on stream, whilst group pre-tax profit grew by a third, from £5.8m to £7.7m.

Rory Clarke, managing director of J.R. Rix & Sons Ltd, said the company had reported a strong trading performance.

He said: “In a commodity-based business like Rix Petroleum, turnover is affected by a number of factors, including the cost of raw materials. When this goes up, the price of product increases in the marketplace, inflating the value of our sales.

“Despite seeing a significant increase in turnover, therefore, the volume of product we sold has only gone up by a relatively small amount, which can be accounted for by some extra sales in the cold snap earlier this year, but mainly due to the acquisitions of Stones Fuel Oils and Wynnstay Fuels.”

Other businesses in the Group also performed well during 2018. For instance, Maritime Bunkering - J.R. Rix and Sons’ marine fuel business - saw a 57 per cent rise in revenue to £60m, due to the fluctuating oil price and growth in volume sold.

Rix Shipping, which manages the Group’s shipping vessels and stevedoring activities in Hull and Montrose, reported a high utilisation rate for its crew transfer fleet serving windfarms in UK and European waters.

This, along with a growth in volumes through its Scottish terminal, led to a nine per cent rise in revenue, from £14m in 2017 to £15m in 2018.

Rory concluded: “This has been a good year for J.R. Rix & Sons. Our fuel wholesale and distributions operations have reported a solid performance, as has our shipping business, and our motor division.

“Our caravan manufacturing operation has seen a slight fall in revenue as a reflection of the decline in retail confidence extending into the leisure home market, so taking that into consideration, the business performed in line with expectations.”

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