SOS acquires new property to bolster post-pandemic recovery

SOS acquires new property to bolster post-pandemic recovery

Business reporter

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

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Retail suppliers Stationery and Office Supplies Limited (SOS), in an attempt to secure growth amid the COVID-19 pandemic, recently acquired a new property, which the company said was critical to its post-pandemic recovery efforts.

The acre property, located at 36 Collins Green in Kingston, represents a $15-million investment from which SOS hopes to secure optimised use for business growth.

“SOS continues to plan for Jamaica's pending economic upturn by ensuring they have the necessary resources to operate efficiently when stock movement returns to normal.

“This addition will allow [the business] to continue to expand. It can be integrated into the inventory management of SOS or could be used to diversify our product offerings and create a new avenue of income generation,” shared Allan McDaniel, deputy managing director, who is also the director of warehousing & logistics at SOS, explained about the property's intended use.

“Ultimately, this undertaking is representative of the company's positive outlook and intention for the future,” McDaniel added.

The property secured last month is expected to be incorporated into the business' operations next year and follows on the recent addition of a 10,000-square-feet warehouse space on property adjoining its current Beechwood Avenue offices.

The business, which specialises in the distribution of office furniture, stationary and school supplies, during its second quarter ended June 30 recorded net losses of $21.9 million due to fallouts from the pandemic. The company, however, has since then seen improvements in revenues which was also significantly affected and down approximately $160 million when compared to the same period last year.

“At the start, COVID affected our business severely. Back in April our revenues declined significantly as the country began to focus on how to manage the COVID-19 virus. We had to adjust our business model to keep up with the changing times and began to include in our inventory items more suitable for homes as a number of people began working from home. Since April we have continued to increase revenues every month and intend to continue to watch SOS' continued growth,” McDaniel said in responding to questions from the Business Observer.

He said that once the property becomes fully commissioned, it is expected that the returns on investment will be favourable, allowing for profit maximisation and an overall improved financial position and growth prospects for the company.

“Looking forward and finding ways to expand has always been integral to the company's growth strategy,” McDaniel said.

“At SOS, we remain committed to acting in the best interest for all our stakeholders —our shareholders, our management, our staff and our customers. This was a move that stands to benefit all our stakeholders, and we could not pass it up — it gives us the physical space needed to grow at this time,” he added.

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