Leading Warwickshire business figure urges firms to Go For Growth

Pictured (left to right): Larry Coltman, Denys Shortt and Louise Bennett (Chamber chief executive)

One of Coventry and Warwickshire’s leading business figures has told commercial leaders they have to “Go for Growth” or risk their companies failing.

Denys Shortt OBE, who has built his health and beauty distribution and manufacturing company, DCS Group, from a start-up to a turnover of £186 million, was a guest speaker at the South Warwickshire branch of the Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce.

Shortt, who was awarded an OBE in the 2013 New Year’s Honours list, spoke as the Chamber rolled out its Go For Growth campaign across South Warwickshire.

The year-long campaign is looking at key areas of business growth but also highlighting and campaigning on issues which could hamper commercial success for local companies in 2016.

Larry Coltman, chair of the branch, said DCS was the perfect venue for the event.

“DCS is a company which has grown strongly in Stratford, bringing jobs, income and opportunity and that is what we need across the board,” he said.

“At the end of 2015 businesses expressed more confidence about the year ahead than they had done for any time in a decade. But they also knew there were threats in the form of factors such as the future of EU membership, interest rates and international volatility.

“Go For Growth will help lobby on those issues and highlight those problems so businesses are aware of them, while at the same time celebrating success.”

Businesses heard from Shortt before being given a guided tour of his operation in the town which includes both manufacturing and also distribution for many of the leading health and beauty brands.

“We are constantly pushing for growth and if you don’t do that you go backwards – your company will wither and die,” he said.

“We are always competing to increase our market share and that means we are on a constant drive to improve customer service and all areas of our operation. That’s what keeps us sharp.”