Rochdale business delivers global success
Date published: 20 September 2019
Lock 50, one of the largest shipping franchise networks in the world
A growing family business set up from a bedroom in Rochdale is now a global company trading in 14 countries worldwide.
With an office at the Lock 50 Business Centre on Oldham Road, InXpress is part of one of the largest shipping franchise networks in the world, now celebrating 20 years in business.
InXpress provides courier services for thousands of UK and international customers, helping move millions of items each year, from documents and packets, parcels and components through to shipping containers for businesses large and small. With 95 franchises in the UK and bases worldwide, their services are fully integrated and all managed online. They’ve been involved in everything from arranging seafreight to Los Angeles, to delivering replica red phone boxes around the world.
Fuelled by the boom in e-commerce it’s an amazing success story for a company started by Littleborough resident John Thompson. After outgrowing the family home in Rochdale, the company moved its head offices to premises on Fieldhouse Lane, before expanding to Blueberry Business Park in Rochdale.
In 2012 John’s daughter Nikki Edwards swapped her career as a PE teacher to invest in the franchise herself, recruiting new staff in the process, meaning a new office was needed: “It was tough to walk away from the school and a job I loved, but I had lots of support from the InXpress head office. We looked at offices nearby as we needed space for a team of eight and were all impressed with Lock 50, so took the plunge and moved in.
"Initially, we had one of the smallest offices but with three franchises we wanted to work out of the same premises, so expanded here when space became available.”
And it has certainly proved to be the right move, added Nikki: “Our office at Lock 50 is great, the location is perfect and the facilities and services have really helped us. It’s a good environment to be in, with lots of like-minded business people around.”
Though Nikki’s father has now retired, it’s still a family firm, with her sister and brother all very much involved.
Plans for further expansion are underway, with the high tech company recruiting more sales staff and unveiling new cutting edge shipping software this month, which Nikki says will further improve their service: “The business has heavily invested in a platform that can help our customers save time and money, keeping everything in one place and all tracked in real time.
"We’re really happy in Rochdale; InXpress employ local staff who like the location and it’s where it all began, so we’re proud to call it home.”
As well as celebrating 20 years in business, 2019 has been another good year for the global company, seeing them ranked twelfth in the prestigious list of ‘Franchise Direct’s Top 100 Franchises’, ahead of household names including Costa Coffee and Burger King. They’ve also made the final of the Franchise Marketing Awards.
Councillor Daalat Ali, deputy leader and cabinet member for resources at Rochdale Borough Council said: “InXpress is an innovative, multi-award winning company and I am proud to see how far they have come in the last two decades. Founded in Rochdale, it’s also very pleasing to see them still here, committed to the area and continuing to thrive with their head office in Rochdale and an office in our council-run managed workspace.”
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