Brisol bakery Parsons set to double in size
A FAMILY owned Bristol bakers is planning to double in size over the next three years after winning financial backing from its bank.
Parsons Bakers is looking to double the size of its stores to 70 over the next three years and will take on 100 new members of staff as part of its £1.7 million expansion plans.
The announcement has come after the firm agreed a new seven-figure finance agreement with Santander Corporate & Commercial banking.
Parsons, founded more than 100 years ago and currently managed by the fourth generation of the Parsons family, operates from one central bakery in Ashton Vale, where it bakes bread, cakes and pastries, and ships them out every day to 34 stores around Bristol, the South West and South Wales.
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The new stores will all be in Bristol and the surrounding area and will open within the next three years.
Herbert Parsons originally started the bakery in the early 1900s in Clevedon and the firm has passed from father to son.
Fourth generation bakers, brothers Nick and Jeremy Parsons, bought the firm from their father in 2001 when he retired. Nick is managing director while Jeremy is operations director.
Five years ago the main bakery moved from Nailsea where it had been trading for nearly 40 years to bigger premises at its present site in South Liberty Lane.
Between them the shops currently attract some 30,000 customers every week giving the firm a turnover of more than £5 million.
The new financing agreement with Santander will see Parsons open around 12 new shops per year for the next three years, bringing the number of stores from 34 to 70 by the end of 2015.
Nick Parsons said: “Santander really took the time to understand our business and delivered an innovative funding solution which will help us achieve our goals of business growth, brand development and job creation.
“The whole team at Santander showed real enthusiasm for what we want to achieve and communicated clearly with us throughout the process – it was a refreshing way to work with a bank.”
Simon Whyatt, Relationship Director for Santander Corporate & Commercial, said: “Parsons Bakery is an excellent example of a strong, well managed local business with the potential to significantly grow.
“They offer a truly fantastic range of products, and have developed a real brand heritage in the Bristol and South West area. We are delighted to be able to help them with this latest funding and help them create a significant number of jobs in the region. I am looking forward to building our relationship with Parsons in the months and years to come.”
MTLS Ventures, a new investment fund has also invested in the Parsons, taking a minority stake as part of the £1.7m fundraising for the expansion.
Matt Eves, of MTLS Ventures, said: “We are delighted to have provided expansion capital to Parsons to enable the management team to grow the business to 70 sites.
Accountant and advisory firm Baker Tilly advised Parsons on the deal.