BITO Group owner Fritz Bittmann cut the ribbon to open the new facilities of UK group company BITO Storage Systems, during a ceremony that also celebrated his 80th birthday.
Retired from management in 2009 but remaining an integral part of BITO, Fritz Bittmann took over the then small family business some 56 years ago and developed it into a global leader in intralogistics, storage and order picking solutions.
There to help mark this happy double occasion were BITO Group directors and management from throughout Europe, along with company staff and key suppliers. Also in attendance were prominent members of the logistics sector, as well as former CBI director general, Lord Digby Jones, who added his thoughts to a day celebrating a significant European business.
During the opening ceremony Edward Hutchison, managing director of BITO Storage Systems said: "We've seen constant growth on gross profit of over 20% in the UK. This year in the first quarter we've accelerated to 40%. We are growing, hence the expansion with the new premises and employing more people – we've extended our workforce by 20% in the last 6 months alone and we plan to continue this growth, which the new facility will facilitate."
Located just across the road from its former premises in Helmsdale Business Park, Nuneaton, the brand new purpose built office, show room, experience centre and distribution centre facility will double the company's current stock holding capacity of for intralogistics solutions. Holding a broader range of stock – including Pallet Racking and Carton-Live in addition to a greater volume of fast moving stock items such as shelving, bins and containers – will ensure that more products are available on its Fast Track 3-day service.
Presenting a high tech, modern and attractive work place the multifaceted facility can also host meetings and allow clients to try out their solutions.
Speaking at the opening event, BITO Group MD Winfried Schmuck said: "What Edward and his team have created is fantastic and reflects BITO's philosophy. BITO is 171 years old now and several generations of Bittmanns have created this company - always with honest, long-term thinking that is valid for customers and employees. BITO Group has reached a 200m Euro turnover and 220m Euro order entry through solid, profitable growth. We strongly believe in our people and core values of quality, service and long-term partnership. We created the UK subsidiary in 1999. In January 2001, Edward arrived and created a completely new company with a very solid business model – including the ability to order though a catalogue or online, delivering to all sectors operating logistics in the UK. Edward has created a fantastic 'family' here in terms of the team, who together have increased BITO UK turnover 10 fold in 15 years. I am looking forward to seeing this success story continue."
Lord Jones added: "World class products, quality inward investment by a quality business into the World's most successful economy, a Happy Big Birthday to the company's owner - what a fabulous opportunity to celebrate so much that is good at a time when good news is in short supply. It is a privilege to be asked to participate in these celebrations and the company being longstanding major supporters of Leicester Tigers had nothing to do with it - well perhaps just a little bit!"
Hutchison concluded: "I am extremely proud to be hosting the opening of our wonderful new facility and celebrating the special occasion of Mr Bittmann's 80th birthday. It is fitting that he should officially open our brand new building, which marks a significant next step for BITO in the UK and is an important new development in the Nuneaton and logistics business landscape. The new facility reflects our philosophy of 'Perfection is our Passion', and will allow us to provide our service to a growing list of customers in the food & beverage, ecommerce, fashion retail, pharmaceutical and automotive sectors."