Revenue soars to £176m at Mersey analysis firm

Liverpool city region-based global metals and mineral inspection and analysis firm Alfred H Knight reports 34.7% rise in revenue to more than £176m with profit also up 54%. Tony McDonough reports

Alfred H Knight
Alfred H Knight is a metals and mineral inspection and analysis business


Knowsley global metals and mineral inspection and analysis firm Alfred H Knight (AHK) is reporting big rises in both profits and revenues.

In its latest set of annual accounts published on Companies House, AHK says revenue for the 12 months to December 31, 2022, was up 34.7% to £176.2m. Pre-tax profit soared by more than 54% to £24.7m.

Founded by Alfred Henry Knight in 1881, the company began its life in Swansea providing independent inspection and analytical services to the metals and minerals industry. Since the mid-1980s its headquarters have been in Merseyside.

Still run by the Knight family, AHK is now established as an international organisation, with a network of offices and laboratories in more than 45 countries around the world.

It moved from Eccleston Grange, St Helens to a larger premise in King’s Business Park in Prescot in 2015, subsequently extending its footprint by investing in the new purpose-built John Knight Laboratory in 2017.

Having outgrown this laboratory, a new Copper laboratory was developed a short distance away in Knowsley Business Park. AHK employs around 4,250 people worldwide, 600 of whom are based in the North West of England.

Speaking to LBN in August, the firm’s head of marketing and communications, Helen Dunning, said: “AHK plays an essential role in the global commodity supply chain that provides essential services for finished products.

“These include medical devices, electronics and sensors, and industries such as energy, utilities, automotive and aerospace, which are vital to the economy.”

As well as its traditional inspection and analysis business, AHK is now enjoying growth thanks to the increasing demand for renewable energy. It has pursued opportunities involving recycled materials to support the growth of battery technology.

In its annual report it said: “The energy services division is expanding in the biomass, recycling and waste sectors and has delivered beyond expectations.”

According to the latest accounts, markets outside of Europe provided the lion’s share of overall revenue, totalling £176.2m. In the UK revenue came in at £10.4m and across Europe it stood at £42.2m.

“The high level of customer service, in conjunction with our agility within the current market, has allowed the group to deliver a strong financial performance in 2022 in all regions and sectors it operates in.”

In the accounts the directors also talked about the difficulties of its Eastern European operations in the context of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. They believe they can continue to fund the firm’s base in Russia without breaking international sanctions.

READ MORE: Merseyside business with a truly global reach

READ MORE: Liverpool Airport voted ‘best in UK’ by travellers

Since the beginning of 2021 AHK has had more than 40 graduates participate in graduate programmes. It also has 11 active apprentices at various levels in different business functions.

It is the company’s intention to significantly expand its apprenticeship programme and graduate programmes.

Directors’ remuneration for 2022, including salaries and pension payments, totalled £2.4m, up from £1.7m in 2021. AHK’s highest paid director received £1.23m in salary and pension payments, up from £956,180 in 2021.

AHK completed several acquisitions during the year and the directors say the business is debt-free. They recommended shareholder dividends of £2.9m, this is lower than in 2021 when almost £5m was paid out.

You might also like More from author

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Username field is empty.