Transport@New Vehicles Sept 10

A significant investment by John Mitchell (Grangemouth) has paved the way for “generational change” according to its MD, who intends to retire within the next few years.

Iain Mitchell said he did not want to wait until he was 65 before deciding how the business should be run in the future.

The 56-year-old said he’d spent the last two years getting the family-owned Scottish haulier into a position where its immediate future was secured.

He was talking to MT after the company’s latest financial results showed a 2.4% increase in turnover to £13.9m in the year ending 31 March 2018. Pre-tax profit fell from £477,000 to £274,000 during the period.

Mitchell said: “It’s my ambition to retire in the next three or four years.

“So, we have invested heavily, got it modernised [the business], brought people in and trained people.

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“I have brought management in and it’s fair to say I have been running it top heavy, but I don’t want to wait until people want out to bring people in.

“We’ve also renewed our trailers, tankers, warehouse equipment; we have invested heavily in the business to get it to a point where [fellow director] Bobby and I exit and it takes pressure off the incoming management and keeps it ticking over on the right side of the lines.”

Mitchell’s son and daughter are involved in the haulage company, but it’s unlikely the current MD will remove himself entirely from the business when he hangs up his boots. “My late father took on a chairman role after stepping down,” Mitchell said.

“He came into the business, attended board meetings and I got the benefit of his experience. I also hope to sit in the wings, although it will then be somebody else’s time.”