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Matthew Lamb, managing director of Potter Logistics
10:41am Tuesday 5th February 2013 in Meet the boss
Matthew Lamb joined family business Potter Logistics in 2005 after experience in a number of large logistics and business services companies.
“I was forever bumping into Derek Potter travelling to and from London and Ely and I was working for a customer of the Potter Group. We got to know each other quite well,” he said.
Within a year of becoming managing director, disaster struck as a major customer, which made up 30 per cent of the group’s entire turnover, announced it was to close its regional distribution centres, leaving the business with a very large gap to fill.
Matthew, a keen hill walker who, with the other Potters directors, raised more than £6,000 for Help for Heroes by walking the Yorkshire Three Peaks, set about diversifying the business.
He said: “We secured new business and now have a policy that no customer becomes more than ten per cent of our business in total.
“We have a broader range of customers in the regulated logistics sectors and a broad spread at each depot. We have some significant customers, like Greencore, but not one is more than ten per cent of our turnover.”
The business, which ihas its headquarters in Ripon and has six distribution centres located in Droitwich, Ely, Knowsley, Ripon, Selby and York, acquired York haulier House of James last year, which increased turnover from £15 million to £22 million.
Matthew, who has two daughters, aged 14 and 16, who are at Ripon Grammar School, has also developed the business's commercial property arm and branched out into waste management services.
"Our plans over the next few year will be focusing very much on increasing opportunities with rail freight and we're doing a lot of work with Network Rail to improve geographical access," he said.
Matthew also enjoys eating out at favourite restaurants The Star at Harome, William & Victoria in Harrogate and The Stanwick in Aldbrough St John, which serves his favourite real ale by local brewery Mithril Ales.
What job would you like to have other than your own and why?
All areas of my business interest are pretty much covered by my job because of the breadth of what we do at Potter. I’m not a great scientist or artist.
Leading the Potter Group business to improve profitability and turning it around over the last few years.
Buying the last property that I own personally.
What makes you most angry?
I try not to get angry, I try to get even. But if there is something that frustrates me it’s bureaucracy.
What do you need to make life complete?
My children’s health and happiness.
Why do you make a difference?
My skills are to see opportunities that can be created in the business, while at the same time keeping a sufficient eye on detail.
Born in Kent, made in Yorkshire