Tuffnells has returned to profit just six months after being bought by the firm’s management team in May this year.

Dubbed 'The Big Green Parcel Machine' after its fleet of 1,200 green trucks, the Sheffield-based firm employs 2,300 staff and specialises in delivering mixed freight and items of irregular dimension and weight (IDW).

When it was sold by Connect Group in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown the company was making losses amounting to around £14m on annual revenues of £164m.

Connect Group, which owns Smiths News, bought Tuffnells in 2014 when it was a profitable company but by 2018 it had fallen into the red, reporting a first-half operating loss of £200,000, down from an operating profit of £4.3m in the same period in 2017.

Despite a management reshuffle, a refocusing on IDW and the closure of its Pass my Parcel network, losses continued to mount at Tufnells until the sell-off.

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Announcing its return to profit this week, Tuffnells chief executive Michael Holt said the delivery firm aims to reclaim its place as the number one IDW carrier in the UK.

The company is attributing its transformation to major investments in its IT systems and improvements to its customer service levels, along with a drive into the B2C sector to capture the surge in e-commerce volumes.

Tuffnell’s performance has also been bolstered by a contract which it won earlier this year with Special Engineering Plastics, delivering ventilator components and essential equipment for the London Nightingale Hospital on behalf of Honeywell.

In a statement, Tuffnells said: “Dozens of new jobs have been created and investment has been made into an improved, streamlined and more efficient service, supported by two new vibrant customer experience contact centres.”

It added: “With a clear five-year plan to hand, and the return of a proven successful leadership team, the company plans to continue its growth by investing in new training and processes, apprenticeships and technology, and to improve the services in order to become the number one choice for customers and employees alike."

Michael Holt, executive chairman and chief executive said: “We’ve worked long and hard to figure out where exactly we needed to make improvements and have invested a significant amount of time, effort and money into turning things around. Not only do we want to grow the business, our goal is to reclaim our number one spot as IDW carrier in the UK, and we want to be a better Tuffnells - not just for our customers, but a great place to work for all of our employees too.”