McBurney Transport Group report record profits for 2021
ONE of the north’s biggest transport groups has posted record profits.
Ballymena-based McBurney Transport reported a 27 per cent jump in pre-tax profits to £11.5 million for last year.
On Friday, the group’s commercial director Paul Jackson, told a House of Lords committee the business had been negatively impacted by the Northern Ireland Protocol, which came into effect at the start of 2021.
“The Northern Ireland Protocol for us as a company has been a complete disaster. It simply does not work for our customers,” he said.
Mr Jackson said the transport group had built an extension at its headquarters to house 10 staff to deal with new paperwork linked to the protocol.
Accounts lodged with Companies House for the group's parent company, McBurney Holdings Limited, show it did see the cost of doing business rise during the 12 months to December 31 2021.
Cost of sales increased by £8.5m (9.75 per cent), while administrative expenses rose by £622,000 (8.7 per cent).
But that was largely offset by an 11 per cent rise in turnover to £115.4m, which ultimately left the group with an extra £2.5m in profit after tax, which was 34 per cent up on the year previous.
The same accounts also show McBurney Holding's highest paid director received £117,248 in remuneration last year, 30 per cent more than the highest paid director received in 2020.
McBurney Holdings is the holding company for the group's entire operation, including its Nutts Corner subsidiary Bondelivery NI.
Despite the protocol coming into force in 2021, the UK has unilaterally and indefinitely extended a series of grace periods that limit the amount of red tape.
Even with the grace periods, Mr Jackson told the Lords committee that paperwork was causing major problems for his industry.
“This is 21 months later, and we are banging our head off brick walls watching the bureaucratic mess imposed upon us as hauliers, that we’re having to impose on our customers to make this work,” he said.
The commercial director also claimed that if there was “rigorous implementation” of the protocol on goods crossing the Irish Sea, “east-west movement of traffic will stop”.