A combination of improved productivity and reconfigured warehousing space helped Fowler Welch improve its profit margin in the six months ending 30 September.

While parent Dart Group did not break down the profit performance of its transport and distribution arm, it did reveal that turnover for the period rose 8% year-on-year to £80.3m (2011 H1: £74.2m).

MD Nick Hay said: “Our operating margins are better than for the first half year of 2011/12 due to further revenue growth, improved fleet productivity and our attainment of a number of cost-reduction initiatives.”

Its DC in Heywood, Greater Manchester, which specialises in ambient goods, was singled out for increasing its turnover contribution by 25%. It also cited contract wins for its container division for boosting turnover.

Hay added that Fowler-Welch had “improved operational efficiency” through the “reconfiguration of certain sections of our warehouse space”.

“Other operational efficiencies are also being realised, in particular with the introduction of telemetry and driver development managers to the business,” he said. “ These investments, along with our focus on vehicle design and set-up have positively impacted fuel-efficiency over the past six months.

“We expect this to continue,” he said.