SME

Published: February 20, 2022 | Updated: February 21, 2022

Pen and paper still in fashion with Pukka Pads seeing its turnover increase by 15% to £22.7m

Pukka Pads’ Metallic range, described as a Pukka classic. Over 2m A4 Metallic jotta pads were sold in 2021, alone.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

A Poole-based company which sells its products in 43 countries worldwide says pen and paper isn’t dead after reporting a 15 per cent increase in annual turnover.

Pukka Pads, founded in 1999, believes remote and hybrid working patterns are behind the boost.

Sales increased from approximately £19.8m in 2020 to £22.7m last year.

It’s the most significant growth seen by the business in several years as the stationery market benefits from new working patterns across the country.

The brand’s success is attributed to a combination of external and internal factors.

While many UK businesses adopted remote or hybrid working models last year, Pukka Pads consequently saw an increase in sales directly from the consumer through Amazon and its own newly-launched consumer-facing website.

The major growth in direct-to-consumer online retailing is significantly influencing the stationery brand’s business model.

In 2021, eCommerce sales contributed to approximately ten per cent of Pukka Pads’ total revenue, up from 1.5 per cent the previous year.

Chris Stott, Pukka Pads’ Founder and Managing Director, said: “2021 was an incredibly successful year for us.

“Our most popular products were unwavering in their success.

“We sold over two million A4 Metallic Jotta Pads alone, and although we are an established and trusted brand, we continue to innovate and maximise new opportunities to grow sales.

“The new ranges we released in 2021, coupled with our first consumer-facing website, were designed with changing consumer demands in mind.

“With working from home now the norm, consumers want to choose stationery that reflects their personality and have it delivered straight to their door.

“Choosing your own notebooks, diaries and pens becomes more of an experience than picking it up from the office stationery cupboard.

“We’re seeing more and more that consumers have rediscovered their love for handwriting and jotting that they perhaps lost after finishing education.

“Consumers like the fact that they can access brighter and bolder products from the same trusted stationery brand.

“This is a pattern that is now being reflected in retailer buying, as they also adapt their stock to consumer needs.”

In 2021, the brand launched four new ranges and 50 new products.

The Bloom range proved particularly popular and was Pukka Pads’ bestselling new range of the year.

With non-essential retail returning to a more level playing field in 2021, orders from large retailers returned to pre-pandemic levels.

Pukka Pads also took on new retail customers, including a major high street stationery store.

The largest customers of the independent family business include the major UK-wide supermarkets.

Over the past year, sales from these grew by more than 11 per cent.

Tesco was the stationery brand’s largest customer in 2021 and increased its order size by 11.53 per cent, demonstrating increased demand for stationery products.

Pukka Pads is now preparing for the launch of a significant new range this Spring.

It will emphasise the brand’s environmentally conscious approach and drive consumers to consider their impact on the planet.