Another exciting year of growth and expansion is now over and, I must say, the future for dry ice blasting in the UK is looking stronger than ever!
Growth for new customers has risen by a further 5% and, whilst not as high as last year’s 7% growth, it still indicates a healthy upturn in service requirements. A major reason for a slight slowdown in new customers is two-fold:
So, onto repeat business. I consider this area to be one of the most important aspects of the business and one where we have witnessed a massive 16% growth in service hours. The main areas for this growth have been due to our clients taking the service to other aspects of their business and also taking dry ice blasting to other sites. In some cases Optimum have been added to scheduled audits, in order to comply with industry regulation. In other cases our dry ice blasting frequency has been increased due to the saving in lost production through downtime.
Profits were again up, this time by 15%. There were no capital asset added to the current stock but depreciation of older asset and a rise in maintenance costs were of some concern this term and something I am keeping a close eye on.
Wages and material costs were again our major spend on non-capital assets. Wages increased by 10% and this is a reflection of overtime incurred by extra workloads. Materials showed a surge at 20% increase. Again this is reflected in the increased work Optimum carried out.
New sectors of business that opened up in this period has seen an upsurge in Pharmaceutical companies using Optimum dry ice blasting, with one major client now booking us in for more work. Another, and very much an untapped sector for Optimum, was in the Chemical manufacturing companies. We blasted over 200 hours over the year, compared to just 8 hours in the previous year. Again we have future work planned for factory shutdowns.
Our major breakthrough was in the Oil and Gas sector. Optimum carried out a delicate and tricky operation at an oil refinery, solving a worldwide problem within the industry and now we are the first dry ice blasting company in the World to carry out this task. Can’t mention too much here as the company we worked for are writing a white paper on the solution and want full NDA until it’s finished. Watch this space.
Again I would like to thank my dedicated teams for their massive contribution to making Optimum Dry Ice Blasting such a success.