Wincanton has seen an increase in business as companies that use imports “start to build up reserves” ahead of Brexit, the logistics firm’s boss said on Thursday.
Adrian Colman told the Evening Standard that some clients have recently started to bring in more products for storage, including engineering spare parts, “to make sure they have key components” when Britain leaves the EU next March.
Drinks firms have also upped imports.
Colman added that his storage and transport firm has been contacted by a number of potential new customers looking to prepare for Britain’s exit from the EU.
The chief executive’s comments came as Wincanton said pre-tax profits in the six months to September 30 rose to £30.1 million from £20.3 million. Revenues were largely flat at £581.8 million.
It benefited from steady demand for services from online retailers, and contract renewals with furniture seller Loaf.com and Halfords.
Wincanton added that extra work with budget retailers such as Ikea and Wilko helped to make up for lost contracts with Premier Foods and Tesco.
Steve Woolf, analyst at broker Numis, said: “While life on the UK high street remains challenging, Wincanton’s exposure to troubled retailers remains low, in our view.”
Wincanton is lifting the interim dividend 10% to 3.6p per share.
The shares rose 7p to 222.5p.