A Worcestershire pharmaceutical wholesalers run by an all-women management team has launched a £600,000-plus expansion plan after more than doubling its turnover in the past five years.
Bromsgrove-based Blake Walker, which supplies pharmacies all over the Midlands and dispensing doctors throughout the country, has invested the money in its first ever self-owned warehouse.
The company, headed by managing director, Debbie Cox, aged 34, spent more than £550,000 buying the former engineering works through John Truslove, a Worcestershire-based business property consultant.
It then paid out a further £90,000 to refurbish the building and bring it up to the stringent hygiene standards required by the Department of Health.
"We were operating out of a rented 3,000 sq ft warehouse before, but we had outgrown it and it had become impossible to stay there," said Ms Cox, who owns the company with her business partner pharmacist Tom Walker.
"This warehouse is more than three times bigger and the time was right for us to make an investment like this. It gives us a lot more scope for the future and some standing in the industry.
"Tom and I were driving past the end of the road one day, saw this place for sale and put in an offer on it. John Truslove and his staff were great and the purchase went through without any problems."
When Ms Cox joined Blake Walker 16 years ago when she was aged just 19, it operated from a single room above a chemist's shop and supplied three doctors and about 30 pharmacies.
Today, it supplies 100 doctors and 200 pharmacies.
She added: "We have succeeded because of sheer hard work and because we have an all-women management team - even the warehouse manager is a woman,"
"On the first day we moved into our new place, I cried my eyes out at the way my superb staff all rallied round to get everything done."