Packaging manufacturer makes major investment as it eyes record £36m turnover

A manufacturer of flexible packaging has invested £3m in new machinery on the back of a booming order book which is set to push revenues to a record-breaking £36m by the end of the year.

Roberts Mart and Co, which has a staff of 200, is now based in purpose-built headquarters at Aire Valley House in south Leeds after moving from its iconic premises at Bank Mills in 2004.

The company has invested heavily in new kit, including an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, which goes live later this year and will help the company keep pace with demand.

Roberts Mart’s managing director, William Roberts, said: “It has been a very busy year for the company. This significant investment in new equipment is possible because we have a healthy order book – with a good number of new orders coming through the pipeline as well. We are seeing growth across the board, particularly food, where we are seeing much more opportunity in snacks and confectionery.

“Normally you would spread capital expenditure out over a period of time but the amount of new business we are winning dictates that this time it has been made all at once. It has been an excellent last 12 months – and in the light of our investment, which will make our production process swifter, sharper and more efficient, the future looks very bright indeed.”

Roberts Mart, which was founded by William Roberts in Leeds in 1852 and is run by the sixth generation of the Robert family, supplies a vast range of shrink wrap, laminated film and printed flexible packaging to clients in the food and drink, home textiles and paper products industries.

William began trading as a paper merchant in Lady Lane, Leeds, making handmade bags, before moving into commercial printing.

Co-directors William and Ben Roberts are following in the footsteps of their father and chairman John, who handed over the day-to-day management in 2009.