The business on...Andrew Tinkler, Chief executive, Stobart Group
Saturday 22 January 2011
The man with all the Yorkie bars?
Actually, he's a builder by trade, rather than a trucker.
But he has been in charge of the Eddie Stobart road haulage business since 2004. He and his business partner, William Stobart, bought out Eddie Stobart Jnr, the latter's brother and the son of the original founder. Then they floated the company three years later.
And how is it all going?
Not too badly. Stobart said yesterday that, while the December snowfall cost it £1.5m, it was still on target to hit profit targets for the year.
The boss has obviously been putting his foot down
Metaphorically speaking – an expansion into rail freight has done well and Stobart has won a string of contracts with big corporate clients.
But he doesn't drive the trucks?
No, Stobart's fleet of lorries, each one with its own girl's name, is manned by professional hauliers.
So how did Mr Tinkler make enough money to buy into Stobart in the first place?
A combination of hard work and luck. He met William Stobart when they were both teenagers and even had a part-time job washing the lorries. Then he set himself up as a joiner. On his first job, fitting doors at an old people's home, he was asked whether he wanted a big building contract. He said yes immediately, hired a couple of contractors and started his own building business. It became a huge success.
Has the money gone to his head?
Not at all, apparently. People often comment on his clothes – he likes a bit of designer clobber – but he remains closely involved in the community near his home in Carlisle, and Stobart Group sponsors a string of local sports teams.
What, no vices at all?
Not unless you count the gee-gees, his big interest outside work. Having got really into the sport two or three years ago, Mr Tinkler now has 15 racehorses in training with Michael Dods in Darlington. They race under Stobart's green colours, naturally.
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