A SCOTTISH firm that sends gifts worldwide has seen its business grow by a whopping 350% after it reported earlier this year that Brexit had cost it a tenth of its sales.

Bradfords Bakers, which was founded in Glasgow more than a century ago, has been operating solely online for the past seven years and has seen sales rocket at various stages of the Covid-19 lockdowns.

Managing director Jim McGoldrick, who runs the company with his wife Claire – the fourth-generation Bradford to run the firm – admitted they would not have survived without the business the health crisis generated, but he said the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement would either have to be redrawn or scrapped altogether.

Bradfords brought the Miss Cranston name back to Glasgow city centre, but was hit by the global financial crisis in 2008 and closed its shops during the 2013 recession, switching everything online.

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In April, McGoldrick told The National that Brexit complications, such as additional paperwork and shipping difficulties, had led to income falling by 10%.

However, things picked up as retail outlets began to close, which resulted in regular late-night working.

He said: “We had to bring in more staff to cope and we had to limit the number of things we could send out. It was great because we were able to store cash, but it was tiring and hard on the staff.

“For us as a company it was good because it negated some of the Brexit effects to an extent, but it also exacerbated others, like us getting stuff out to Europe and manufacturers getting things to us.

“We can’t send to the EU at the moment and we’re barely able to send to Northern Ireland and we can’t get chocolate from our usual German supplier.”

The extra income had meant Bradfords has been able to buy in extra stock to cope with any further disruption in their supply chain.

However, the firm normally sends gifts all over the world, frequently for major corporations, and that road is likely to become bumpier through Brexit. McGoldrick said: “We’re going to have to do something different that’s not affected by Brexit.

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“Christmas will be the telling point for us. It’s either going to be great or we are going to have some serious problems, because a lot of our clients are corporates who send gifts abroad. It’s a joke – I can send to the USA or Australia, Hong Kong or China, but I can’t send to Paris or Berlin.

“We’re planning for the worst but we’re looking for a solution to our problems in the next 12 months.”

McGoldrick added: “The really serious issue is the [withdrawal] agreement and whether or not there will be a solution and if there’s not the smaller companies are going to be hammered. The treaty has either got to be modified or ripped up and redrawn.”