2020 Year in Review - Managing Director Address

Our Managing Director, John Housego, looks back at was has been a rollercoaster kind of a year, full of challenges and opportunities.

2020 was always going to be a year of transition for Aquascot. We had plans to extend our products into a new sphere completely, had challenges we needed to face into with regard to our core business and had to continue our journey as an employee-owned business. Little did we know the effect COVID would have on all of us.

Immediately ahead of lockdown in March, Aquascot saw the arrival of a new Managing Director, not the ideal start, or was it? We also saw massive uplift in orders due to panic buying and the resulting change to foodservice and scratch cooking at home. We were challenged with being COVID-safe and key workers driving to work on empty roads was quite eery.

Our teams outside of production suddenly found themselves working from home and separated, our production teams getting used to more PPE, social distancing and new shift patterns to limit the risks. It was quite a trying time for all, but one that partners in Aquascot showed their true character: they reacted, they solved, and they continued to deliver. It has become the norm now, we have adjusted, we have learnt like many others have needed to, but it was not the only thing we did.


Our Managing Director, John Housego

We continued to invest in our partners with a new Category & Marketing Officer and two new members of our Aquaculture team, increased our support in the engineering team and recruited strongly in our production teams to meet the demand. We launched a new website, changed our Long Service Awards, introduced strategic themes to help us focus and delivered multiple new capability in our production lines, along with tempering and freezing capacity.

If that was not enough, we introduced a new methodology of reviewing our partners’ performance and development needs with the introduction of our Recognition & Reward process. This is a step closer to being the fully engaged great employee-owned company that we are striving to be.

Our demand and business results have reflected the opportunity COVID delivered to us, but opportunities need to be taken and grasped. Aquascot has done that, as has our partner Waitrose in building a strong online capability in the matter of weeks. We are grateful to them for their communication alignment and information sharing they did through the crisis caused by COVID and their continued support of our business.

It’s been quite a year. We walked past average and moved to outstanding. Let’s keep climbing in 2021.

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