Acquiring Minds Want To Know

Acquiring Minds Want To Know

A new report by Barclays Corporate Banking finds that nearly half of all UK logistics businesses are likely to make an acquisition in the next 12 months as they look to expand operations and become more competitive—the highest figure recorded in the survey’s 10-year history.

The survey also reveals that despite the challenges facing the logistics sector, three out of five companies expect their turnover to increase in the coming year. 80% of respondents are concerned with labor shortages, which are set to have a major impact.

In fact, concerns over a dearth of workers have led nine in 10 firms to improve pay and conditions for their workforce. The most sought-after roles are drivers and warehouse staff, followed by office and admin staff.

Competition for talent was so high that drivers qualified to drive the heaviest vehicles saw advertised salaries increase by an average of 25% in the past year alone (Q1 2022 vs Q1 2021).

Somewhat surprisingly, against a gloomy economic outlook, a small majority of logistics businesses are optimistic about the outlook for the coming year, compared with those who are pessimistic.

High inflation and rising costs impact profitability levels, as just fewer than half (45%) of logistics companies say their margins will improve in the next 12 months, compared with 62% this time last year.

Meanwhile, almost one-third (30%) anticipate a drop in profitability, up by 11% from 2021.