This Hove-based wholesaler helps newsagents, convenience stores, supermarkets and petrol stations to keep their shelves stocked. The firm supplies almost 70,000 products, from ice cream and KP nuts to cigarettes and flowers. It owns the Mace, Mace Express and Supershop franchises as well as the distributors Snacksdirect and Sweetdirect. In 2008, chief executive Chris Etherington led a £298m management buyout, with loans provided by Barclays, Burdale and Royal Bank of Scotland. Sales reached £4 billion in 2011.

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Company details
Year2012
Rank7
CompanyPalmer and Harvey
ActivityWholesale distributor
LocationEast Sussex
Sales £m4,032
Profit £m44
Year endApr 11
Principal shareholdersManagement and employees (74%), former employees (26%)
Staff3,255
Founded1925
Websitewww.palmerharvey.co.uk

If applicable:

* Supplied by company † Annualised figure