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EALING.NEWS meets Alexanders, shortlisted for West London Business Awards 2023

Eleven businesses based in Ealing have been shortlisted in 11 categories at this year’s West London Business Awards which take place later this month at Twickenham Stadium on 24 February 2023.

Alexanders located in Park Royal, is one of the businesses to make it to the shortlist in five categories: Logistics Business of the Year,  Community Investment Award, Responsible Workplace, Responsible Supply Chain and Park Royal Business of the Year. They have also been nominated in a the category West London Company of the Decade.

EALING.NEWS caught up with founder and owner Alex Pope, to find out more about what it means to be shortlisted, being based in Ealing, challenges they face and future plans.

What it means to be short listed?
It’s always a huge honour to be shortlisted for any big industry award. It is when we all really feel the benefits of our hard work and it is a wonderful, celebratory evening too. We have won quite a few different awards over the years and they raise our company profile and help us with our PR. We have also made a lot of key contacts as a result of West London Business and it’s awards over the years too..

What does being based in Ealing mean to you?
Being based in the borough of Ealing gives us access to a wonderfully diverse and affluent market and is a very interesting part of London.. It is full of parks and has a everything you need to live a good life. We do a lot of moving and storing jobs in Ealing and it is one of our busiest London markets. We also has such good access to central London form our base in Park Royal.

What are the challenges you face as a business in Ealing?
Challenges that Ealing gives us are the high business rates and the very high rents in Park Royal. By far one of the most expensive trading estates in the UK if not Europe. Prices when we moved there 20 years ago were £5-6 per sq foot and now prices have crept up to £25 -30 per sq ft. Untenable to some small businesses and many of us have had to move out to cheaper industrial locations. HS2 and it’s development has made traffic/ access very bad at times. Hard to run a logistics company out of here and will probably go on for another 4-5 years.

What can Ealing Council do for you to help your business?
Ealing could help with means testing for business rates for smaller and larger companies.. A fairer system would help those struggling particularly post Covid and Brexit. Helping with access issues with HS2 would be a good idea. The road outside our warehouse has been closed for over a year now and our customers struggle to find us. Hard and not good for business.

What can the government do for you to help your business?
Reverse Brexit. The singular most damaging thing that we have ever faced as a business. Finding good staff now is the hardest in all my years of running Alexanders. We lost half of our work force in a very short amount of time and have never really recovered from that.. Covid was ‘the-nail -in-the-coffin’ for finding good staff too.. Both have made growth way harder.

A year from now, where do you see your business?
We are targeting 20% growth year on year. This is not easy at all but we are hoping to open up and develop existing parts of the business.. We are trying to recruit experts in each new sector so we learn from them and enjoy the benefits of their experience. We currently have 50 staff and we would hope this number to be near 60 in a year.

What are you most proud of so far in what your business has achieved?
Surviving through pretty tumultuous times is the real achievement I am most proud of overall. Being in business when it is hard and stressful is really very tough indeed. I enjoy a good night’s sleep as that is a sign to me that thing are ok and stable.. We have had wonderful people work for us over the years and many have stayed for more than a decade. A record that make me happy as an owner. I genuinely like the people at Alexanders and I think that reflects in their attitude to work and our clients feel this positivity too.

Alexanders is located at Unit 1, Chase Road Trading Estate, 51 Chase Rd, London NW10 6LG

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