Bakery and food service distribution specialist Bradleys is going from strength to strength, growing organically and through major acquisitions. The Kent-based business extensively uses Sage 200cloud business management software, and throughout this period of massive business change, has relied on Sage Platinum Reseller Pinnacle for support of its IT and telecommunications infrastructure.
Bradleys has made three strategic acquisitions in recent years. Bringing these established businesses under the Bradleys umbrella is a complex process, not least because it requires integrating new product ranges with Bradleys’ original range of 3,500 products.
General Manager Chris Linkins observes: “Pinnacle handled all the technical work involved. In the first business acquisition, the workforce relocated to our Ashford premises, which required adding new users and new email accounts to our network. Next, with the acquisition of a company in Sandwich, Pinnacle brought its Sage 50 accounts software and users into our set-up and security processes. Currently, Pinnacle is migrating cloud-based business systems at our latest acquisition over to our Sage 200cloud systems for us.”
Pinnacle recommended using server virtualisation technology to help in integrating these new companies. This ensures that IT resources can flex to meet increasing business demand. Chris says: “As we grow, Pinnacle makes sure that we never run out of road and always have sufficient IT capacity.”
He adds: “The great added benefit of virtualisation is that we can sort out any issues before migrating to a live environment and be confident it will work on the day, rather than crossing our fingers and trusting to luck! This is because the hypervisor Pinnacle installed lets us experiment with different scenarios for incorporating our acquired businesses.”
Chris Linkins notes that Bradleys’ commercial success has been achieved in the face of fierce competition, currency fluctuations and rising food prices: “Operating a food business in a world where food inflation is a fact of life is never easy. We’re fortunate in having Pinnacle on hand to care for the IT and telecoms systems that are critical to our business continuity. Their advice is always focused on our needs.”
For Pinnacle, Nigel Blanks, IT Services Business Development Consultant, comments: “We are proud to be associated with an ambitious company like Bradleys, and to have built such a close working partnership over many years. Our aim is for the Bradleys management team to be able to focus on winning new customers and making strategic business acquisitions, confident that behind the scenes we are maintaining and developing the company’s IT infrastructure.”
From early days in the 1960s when founder Fred Bradley ran the business solo, Bradleys has grown into a business that employs a team of over 30 people, with a turnover in excess of £8 million.
The company serves businesses throughout the South East, covering an area that includes Kent, Sussex, Surrey, South East London, Essex, Hampshire, Norfolk and Suffolk. Deliveries into most areas are twice a week using the company’s own fleet of modern multi-temperature vehicles.
Visit Bradleys: ww.bradleysfoods.co.uk