The sandwiches, savouries and confectionary you receive from Cooplands carry the quality of a baking tradition; a tradition that dates back to 1932 when Mrs Alice Jenkinson opened a shop at 33 Hallgate, Doncaster to sell homemade cakes and chocolates. And today, with its continued commitment to superior quality and customer service, the company is working harder than ever to consistently provide the best portfolio of products in Yorkshire.

Continuing to be very much a family run business, with the founder’s son, David Jenkinson, as the company’s President and family members working day to day in the business, Cooplands has gained respect and praises for its distinctive products down the years, as well as reliable service.

Indeed, when Chris Peck joined the company as Chairman in 1998 he vowed to never sacrifice quality for quantity, ensuring that the entire product range remained true to the artisan ways that inspired Alice Jenkinson to enter the business in the first place.   He is proud to admit that fulfilling this promise is the secret to his continuing success.

This is not a business fixated on the past, however. In fact, over the last 12 months Cooplands has moved into another gear, investing heavily in people, procedures and acquisitions.

Cooplands currently operates out of a state-of-the-art bakery in Doncaster, which supplies the company’s 89 stores, mostly located throughout South Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire. All but one of these stores is company owned; the odd one out being a franchised outlet run by the Brookfield Group which, when looking for a high quality, highly respected brand for a forecourt operation immediately turned to Cooplands.

A well capitalised company that owns a lot of freehold property, including 30 of its stores, Cooplands has made major acquisitions over the past year, financed by the proceedings of investment properties that the company felt were no longer relevant to its core business. This allowed it to purchase 10 stores from Ainsley’s in Leeds and two stores from Bradford-based Sparks.

The company has also extended its mobile sales fleet, known as Bap Vans, to 17 vehicles, which reach into locations where a store wouldn’t work, but the product range most definitely does.

Further investment has included a new EPOS system right across the business and a ‘celebration cake’ offer via an attractive, modern website to customers throughout the length and breadth of the UK.

Cooplands has invested in developing its people too, whilst improving cost-efficiency by rationalising the business and simplifying company procedures.

The result is a ‘lean’ company which, whilst retaining its traditional focus, is now ready to confidently move forwards and evolve. Indeed, Cooplands is looking to increase its turnover by around 10% in 2011, despite the current economically challenging times.

So although the industry has lost many bakers over the last few years, Cooplands retains its position as one of the best in Britain, committed to providing its customers with exactly what they want, when they want it … and at a standard that has set a benchmark.

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