Family-run Newry forecourt business boosts sales to £25.3m

The Fiveways complex in Newry, which had sales of £25.3 million last year
Gary McDonald Business Editor

FAMILY-run Newry service station Fiveways has revealed another four per cent uplift in sales over the last year, its latest accounts reveal.

The business, which has been run by Colm Meehan (72) and his wife Brea for the last 32 years, saw its turnover lift from £25.3 million to £24.4 million in the year to April 30 last.

Located at a key junction where Newry's Armagh Road branches off to Belfast, Portadown and Dublin, Fiveways has grown spectacularly under the Meehans' ownership from just two single petrol pumps and a small independent shop to a 10,000 sq ft complex.

That includes a barber's shop, pharmacy, pet food store, hair and beauty salon, bridal store, in-store off licence, butchery counter, bakery, deli counter and an American-style diner which serves up more than 700 dinners each Sunday alone.

The business currently employs 207 staff (up from 196 the year before), and it has an annual wages bill of more than £2.6 million.

The accounts, published at Companies House, show that gross profit (which represents a 21.6 per cent margin on turnover) came in at £5.5m, which was up on 2018 (£5.3m).

Profit before tax slipped back slightly from £1.8m to £1.3m, and retained profit for the year, after providing for depreciation and tax, amounted to just shy of £1 million (against £1.4m previously).

In recent years Fiveways has amassed a clutch of industry accolades, among them being included in the Investec Mid-Market 100 list as one of the UK's fastest growing medium-sized businesses.

It has also bagged a clutch of “best supermarket” gongs, trading first under the Spar franchise and latterly as a Nisa operator, where it was cited as “a great example of independent retailing”.

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