Braehead Foods saves over £80,000 a year with PODFather

Braehead Foods, one of Scotland’s largest independent food wholesalers, is working with PODFather to optimise routes and streamline proof of delivery processes across its UK wide operation. With a fleet of 20 vehicles, and over 1,300 hotel and restaurant customers to serve, Braehead Foods needed a solution that could help modernise its manual transport planning process. PODFather is now used daily to plan driver routes, track vehicle movements, and capture electronic proof of delivery in real time. As a result, the Braehead Foods team is seeing huge benefit – in the form of significant reductions in mileage, driving time and fuel – which equate to a financial saving of over £80,000 a year.

“PODFather is a fantastic system. When we first introduced it there was some hesitancy across the business, from both management and drivers, but as our savings show its introduction has had a huge impact on the way we run our growing business,” comments Andy Clark, Director at Braehead Foods. “We now rely on it every day to create optimised routes for our drivers. This has made a significant difference as the system automatically handles customer delivery windows, opening times and access constraints which makes all our lives a lot easier.”

Each of Braehead Food’s drivers has been issued with a basic Android smartphone on which to run the PODFather app. Once installed the app allows the Braehead planning team to send job information to each driver with all the relevant details relating to specific delivery drop locations; drivers can also gather and log all vehicle check information. Once a drop is complete the driver can collect customer proof of delivery – photo and signature – and submit this back to the transport office in real time. “The PODFather driver app is so intuitive that even our most non-technical drivers have gotten to grips with it really quickly,” adds Clark. “It makes a big difference to how our drivers work; it’s definitely a much easier and more reliable delivery tracking process than the manual, paper-based one we had before.”

The improvements PODFather is delivering are being felt beyond the transport team within Braehead Foods, with customer services and accounts departments seeing the immediate benefit of real time visibility of driver drops and completed PODs. Customer service calls have reduced and time to invoice has been slashed as PODFather facilitates the fast flow of real time information across the whole business. “The admin around planning and executing deliveries has been dramatically reduced. For starters we are no longer having to call drivers to check where they are, and what time they think they are going to arrive at a customer site. PODFather tells us everything we need to know when we need to know it,” concludes Clark.

“Braehead Foods is an excellent example of how the PODFather solution can transform how a business operates,” adds Colin McCreadie, Managing Director of PODFather. “Our functionality rich, yet easy to use, system ensures that a wide range of business units – from transport through to customer service and accounts – can benefit from the introduction of our cloud-based optimisation and delivery management solution. To be able to report a saving of £80,000, which has been realized in a matter of months, is a huge achievement for the Braehead Foods team and we’re delighted be able to support them as they continue to develop their use of the PODFather solution.”

PODFather Ltd – so much more than ePOD

Our software is helping businesses within the logistics, construction, field service and healthcare industries to streamline processes, improve operational and financial efficiency, and eradicate paper. Our cloud-based delivery management software encompasses a range of features and functionality including; job management, route planning and optimization, vehicle checks, proof of delivery, driver and vehicle tracking, as well as invoicing and reporting modules. PODFather allows businesses to be better informed about the jobs they are managing, highlighting problems before they occur, making users proactive rather than reactive. Our customer base includes well-known names such as Tarmac, NHS, Bidfresh, Oxfam and Igloo, as well as a many independent logistics and construction service operators. To find out more visit

Please direct all media request to: Jane Geary, Marketing Manager
Tel: 07590 376099,

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130 year old Trade Mark Owners Association relaunched following Investor-backed Management Buy-Out

The 130 year old Trade Mark Owners Association relaunched following an Investor-backed Management Buy-Out.

“A new company, with a strong heritage, ready to meet today’s challenges.”

Originating in 1886, Trade-Mark Owners Association (TMOA) has a proud history. It led to the expansion of global trade-mark protection as one of the world’s first Trade-Mark Attorneys. TMOA went on to represent global companies, including ICI, Heinz, Cadbury and Nestle. TMOA protected its clients’ interests through both World Wars, through both the Great Depression and the 2008 Great Recession. The present state of the global business environment heightens the need for the trusted expertise, dedication and experience of TMOA.

Now, over 130 years after its incorporation, TMOA is being relaunched by its attorneys and their colleagues, following an Investor-backed Management Buy-Out. The investment recognises the unwavering commitment, loyalty and professionalism of the TMOA team. It will enable them to take control of their business and build a truly client-focused, colleague-led practice that will benefit its clients, its global associates and its colleagues. The best legal trade-mark advice and services will continue, in a new way, led by a great team.

Earlier this month 99% of Nucleus IP’s stakeholders voted in favour of an Investor-backed Management-Buy-Out of the business, and on 19th May 2020 ownership of the business transferred to its attorneys and colleagues, its Pension Fund, and its new Managing Director, Paul Hayman.

The newly relaunched TMOA is again looking to lead the way, this time recognising that – more than ever – there is a need for a caring, compassionate approach that benefits clients, colleagues and partners alike. A new way of working that provides unrivalled service to clients, a better work/life balance and opportunities for colleagues, and trusted partnerships with associates across the globe.

TMOA’s Managing Director Paul Hayman said: “The world is experiencing extraordinary events so now is the perfect time to relaunch TMOA. We believe that now, more than ever, our clients and colleagues want a partner they can trust to provide excellent service and, as important, who they can trust to be compassionate and supportive. TMOA will be their loyal ally, protecting their interests, especially through the hardest of times. We draw on our proud heritage as we build a new enterprise for the future: one that will address the challenges and opportunities of the world we live in today. The old ways served us well for many decades, but the world has changed, and we have to find a better way.”

TMOA’s former Joint General Manager, Les Powell said: “Relaunching TMOA is a wonderful idea as it enjoyed so much goodwill from clients and agents around the world, with whom we encouraged the building of working friendships. Reviving this way of working, in an updated and modern way, will be a very good thing for everyone. TMOA will be a new company, with a strong heritage, ready to meet today’s challenges.”

Kishor Davdra, who joined TMOA in 1972 and was Company Secretary and Joint General Manager from 1986 to 1999, added “I am delighted TMOA is being relaunched. It is especially cheering to see its return now. TMOA has always offered protection and stability in an uncertain world. I was so proud to be a part of it.”

About Trade Mark Owners Association (TMOA)

TMOA has been involved in the protection of trade marks for over 130 years and has protected the trade-marks of thousands of companies, from entrepreneurial owner-managed businesses, to global multi-nationals; doing so globally in every country where registration is possible.

Services provided include: searching into the availability for use and registration of trade-marks; filing and prosecution of trade mark applications; the enforcement and defence of rights obtained; and the renewal of registered rights.

Most recently, TMOA has been helping its clients protect their interests through the current period of global uncertainty with two services that enable them to: watch for, and react to, trade mark infringements globally; and set up structures that efficiently insulate, and so protect, their intellectual property from trading risk. Both are becoming must-have “insurance policies” that effectively protect clients’ interests, and so mitigate business risk.


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Liverpool hairdresser scoops top salon award for second year in a row

Liverpool independent hairdresser Andrew Joseph Manion has scooped the award for Best Local Salon of the Year award at the English Hair & Beauty Awards for the second year in a row.

This is the 9th award for the international session stylist who photoshoots and weddings take him around the world. The  criteria for winning the award was a salon who provides outstanding service and Andrew sent in 400 5* reviews from their clients.

Andrew started his career in a salon in Woolton Village, Liverpool, where discovered his love of hair. Training as a head colourist within the salon he worked in, he spent 4 years mastering the art of colour before moving into styling and cutting

He then moved to France for three years. returning to the UK he set up a mobile hairdressing business on a scooter before he became so in demand he required permanent premises and so AJM Hair was developed. His salon is now based on Aigburth Road.

Andrew has been Creative Head Stylist at Liverpool Fashion Week, Milan Fashion Week London Fashion Week 2019

He has had work published in Italian Vogue and on the front cover Trend Prive Global Magazine.

Upon winning his award Andrew said, “This is such a huge honour and I am absolutely thrilled to win. We were up against tough competition so it was a big shock to win. I am immensely proud and would like to thank my team and customers for all their support. I love hairdressing, it’s always been my passion.

The next big thing for me is focusing on entering more competitions as a salon and raising our profile even more, on a personal level I am focusing on raising my profile as a makeup artists as well as a hairstylist! “

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Why cashflow management should be your 2020 New Year resolution

For many of our clients, who are technology start-ups, specialist manufacturers or SME’s, cash is a major concern. And it’s not just our clients, all of the most recent administrations were by businesses who had run out of cash. In fact in a recent discussion among the Practical CFO team, we could only recall two companies that had not closed because of cash shortages (The News of the World and Anderson Consulting where reputational damage led to their closures).

Here at Practical CFO, we’ve put our heads together and compiled the following Practical ways to manage your cash flow;


Forecast your cash in and out flows daily for a minimum of the next 30 days (90 days is even better). If you can, produce a best, better and worst-case scenario. The more you know about the payments you have to make, and the cash you may or not may not receive, the more warning you will have of cash flow tight spots. Don’t forget to add statutory payments such as PAYE and VAT. Knowing your future cash position will allow you to take early corrective action. There is nothing worse than knowing that there is no money in the bank to pay the wages when it is too late to do anything about it.

Also ensure you know who and where future invoices should be sent, with the correct details included such as purchase order numbers. Some companies make an art form of not paying an invoice because it doesn’t have all the details they require, so it is essential to address these requirements when preparing the contract.

Better by design

Think about the timing or when you pay your costs compared to when you get paid;

• Add an up-front deposit and staged payments to your contract’s terms. An installer client of ours realised that they paid for all materials and subcontract labour before they even invoice their client let alone get paid! We helped change some of those contracts but also improved processes so that the client could borrow against part completed work.

• Software as a Service (SAAS) doesn’t have to equal monthly payments from your clients. Often clients are so large that it simply doesn’t matter to them whether they pay a year in advance.
• Prioritise where you spend your cash as you grow. We worked with a manufacturer recently who would happily build a stock batch that could last a year, but not have any cash to build another stock line…simply dealing with batch sizes improved sales cover, revenue and cash flow.
• Consider paying all your staff monthly: We know this will be industry specific and may not possible in an existing business, but it should be considered if you’re starting out. This can remove the stress of needing to manage your wage bill on a weekly basis.
• Pay your suppliers once a month (particularly overheads), and only pay those that are due or overdue. It won’t hurt your relationship if your supplier knows that you always do a payment run on the last day of the month. They’ll be able manage their cash flow, and you’ll have a chance to get cash from your customers before paying your suppliers. Beware the contractor who expects to be paid when they submit an invoice!
• Minimise the number of suppliers you pay by direct debit. Admittedly there is nothing you can do about the credit card repayments or bank charges (and they always make sure they get paid) but do you really need to have a direct debit for your business rates or utility bills? Give yourself as much flexibility as possible when it comes to making payments.
• Pay for large capital items via a lease or a loan. Using debt means you can spread the cash impact over months or years. Keep an eye on interest rates and shop around for the best deals, and beware of the tanned photocopier salesman bearing paper gifts…

People pay invoices

Invoice promptly: send yours by email as soon as possible after the service or goods have been provided. There is research that suggests the quicker you invoice, the more likely you are to be paid quickly. Always take advantage of the goodwill people feel towards you when they’ve received great service.

Chase your overdue invoices promptly and get closer to the purchase ledger staff in your customer’s business. The more they know and like you, the more likely they are to put your invoice in the next payment run and even add you to the list when their own cash flow is tight. Build a relationship and if you need to, keep notes about their children, pets, football club or past times. Asking about Tiddle’s last visit to the vet will – literally – pay you dividends.

As your business grows you can access other sources of cash, such as invoice factoring, bank loans, or external investors. If you would like help managing your cash or other aspects of financial management then contact us on

Angela-Marie Graham – Consultant CFO – Practical CFO Ltd

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“Sportsperson of the Year” Awards 2019: Coming Soon

“Winter is coming” which means it’s almost time for the most important and prestigious sports event in Bulgaria – “Sportsperson of the Year”. Preparation for the official ceremony has begun and organizers are already well in place.

The grand sports awards will be held for the 62nd time now, continuing the tradition of celebrating and awarding the achievements of Bulgarian athletes who have competed in different fields over the past year. After so many editions, “Sportsperson of the Year” Awards have turned into a tradition for the Bulgarian nation and Bulgarian sportspeople. The importance and scale of the ceremony attract people with different background – from famous Bulgarian public figures, through politicians, to all the sports enthusiasts, of course.

But let’s not forget all the journalists. Their role is tremendous as they represent the jury of the awards. More than 100 renowned journalists from various national electronic and print media channels take part in the voting every year and select nominees in several main categories. They include: “Sportsperson of the Year”, “Team of the Year”, “Athlete with Disabilities of the Year”, and “Coach of the Year”.

At the very beginning, the awards used to have a bit more modest nature. The very first time when the survey is organized is back 1942 by “Sport” newspaper and it is the readers of the newspaper who select the best athlete at that time. Later on, in 1948 and 1955 the organizer of the poll is “Naroden Sport” newspaper and again the readers determine the winner. In 1956, the poll is carried out by “Radio Sofia”.

The first formal poll is conducted in 1958 when the basketball player Vanya Voinova becomes the first official winner and best athlete of Bulgaria.

Ever since 1994, Nove JSC Holding becomes the official organizer of “Sportsperson of the Year”. The main person behind the event is Vassil Bojkov – businessman, antique collector, and promoter of the Bulgarian sport in many ways.

From what can be observed, each following ceremony is greater than the previous one in terms of organization, program, and stage performances by some of the best Bulgarian musicians and singers. Last year’s ceremony, for instance, was hosted by two of the most recognizable and charming voices in Bulgaria – the radio and TV host Mitko Pavlov and the loved-by-everyone singer Orlin Pavlov.
As for the upcoming “Sportsperson of the Year” 2019, details will be revealed very soon.

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