JW FILSHILL has seen ­pre-tax profits nearly triple in its latest financial year, in spite of competitive and challenging conditions in the independent retail trade.

The Glasgow-based wholesale and cash and carry firm said its focus on driving efficiencies had reduced operating costs by £400,000, helping it achieve a pre-tax profit of £800,000 in the year to January 31. Gross profit was static at £10.2 million. Filshill, which supplies 163 Keystores in Scotland and the north of England, said turnover narrowed to £158 million from £165 million the year before.

The family-owned firm maintained investment in technology during the year, in areas such as its website and electronic point of sale (EPoS) systems.

Loading article content

Filshill loans EPoS systems as part of the service it provides its customers, which also includes store planning advice and leaflets.

Managing director Simon Hannah described the results as "satisfactory" considering the level of competition from discounters and supermarkets.

He said: "The independent retail trade remains highly competitive and challenging, and we seek to manage the principal risk of losing customers by offering strong promotions and wide-ranging advice and support for retailers."