Palmer & Harvey makes 42,000 deliveries a week of products ranging from cigarettes and wine to groceries to corner shops, convenience stores, multiple grocers and petrol stations around the UK. The Hove-based company claims to deliver 26% of the tobacco and 15% of the confectionery sold in the UK. This is achieved from a range of some 12,000 products. Customers also have access to a further 60,000 products from bread to batteries and flowers to fireworks, through a third party drop shipment scheme.
In February 2002, the current management team, led by chairman Christopher Adams, bought the company for a reported £170m, backed by Barclays. An earlier management team, led by Phillip Hudson, had originally bought out the company from the descendents of its founder in 1988, when Palmer & Harvey had sales of around £850m. Archibald Stone originally founded the company in north London in 1925 as a tobacco wholesaler. Palmer & Harvey now claims to be Britain’s biggest delivered wholesaler, with sales of £3.2bn and operating profits of £23m in 2001, when it employed 3,665 staff.

This profile reflects the company at time of publication and does not reflect any changes that may have subsequently occurred. Fast Track and its sponsors do not endorse, guarantee or recommend investment in any of the companies.

Company details
Year2002
Rank2
CompanyPalmer and Harvey
ActivityWholesale distributor
LocationEast Sussex
Sales £m3,212
Profit £m23
Year endJul 01
Principal shareholdersManagement and employees (75%)
Staff3,665
Founded1925
Websitewww.palmerharvey.co.uk

If applicable:

* Supplied by company † Annualised figure