|Type||Public limited company|
|Traded as||LSE: STOB|
|Industry||Integrated Transport Logistics|
(as Eddie Stobart)
23 November 1970
(as Eddie Stobart Ltd.)
|Headquarters||Carlisle, Cumbria, England|
|Area served||Belgium, Ireland, United Kingdom|
|Key people||Andrew Tinkler
(Chief Executive Officer)
(Chief Operating Officer)
|Revenue||£500.4 million (2011)|
|Operating income||£37.5 million (2011)|
|Net income||£23.2 million (2011)|
Stobart Group Ltd (LSE: STOB) (trading as Stobart Group) is a large British multimodal logistics company, with interests in Transport and Distribution, Estates, Infrastructure and Civils, Air, Biomass, Brand Promotion and Legal Services, through operations in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Belgium. The company is incorporated in Guernsey but has operational head offices in Carlisle, Cumbria and Warrington, Cheshire but hopes eventually to re-locate its Carlisle, Cumbria offices to a new, purpose-built building at Carlisle Lake District Airport, where it owns a 150-year lease expiring in 2150.
Started by 'Steady' Eddie Stobart in the late 1940s as an agricultural business in Cumbria, the company was incorporated as Eddie Stobart Ltd. on 23 November 1970 as a haulage firm, eventually passing to his son, Edward Stobart. After a series of complex takeovers, the Stobart company has developed from a haulage company to an intermodal logistics company, achieving a stock market listing without an IPO through a reverse takeover of the Westbury Property Fund. Following the step down of Edward in 2003, the Stobart family is now represented in the business through Edward's brother William Stobart.
Brothers-in-law Andrew Tinkler and William Stobart hold 9.37% and 3.3% respectively of the Stobart Group as of May 2012. Allan Jenkinson holds 4.93% of the company, the Irlam family hold 2.88% of the company and Steve O'Connor holds a further just under 3% of the company as of May 2012. The largest overall shareholder is now the investment management company Invesco who now holds 36.69% of the Stobart Group as of May 2012. The company is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a former constituent of the FTSE 250 Index. However, unlike most UK public companies, Stobart Group retains its "Ltd" status as it is registered in Guernsey and not England & Wales or Scotland, which would require it to change its suffix to "plc" status.
- 1 History
- 2 Financial performance
- 3 Current operations
- 3.1 Stobart Transport and Distribution
- 3.2 Stobart Estates
- 3.3 Stobart Infrastructure and Civils
- 3.4 Stobart Air
- 3.5 Stobart Biomass
- 4 Stobart Brand
- 5 Stobart Barristers
- 6 Controversy
- 7 In popular culture
- 8 Gallery
- 9 See also
- 10 References
- 11 External links
The business was started by 'Steady' Eddie Stobart in the late 1940s as an agricultural business in Cumbria. His son, Edward Stobart Junior, was born in Cumberland in England on 21 November 1954 at his parents' house just outside Hesket Newmarket near Carlisle. He was one of four children, with an elder sister Anne, an elder brother John and a younger brother William. He was always called Edward to avoid confusion with his father Eddie. He was very interested in lorries, and when he left school, he started working for his father's contracting business delivering agricultural material in the region. By 1970, the company consisted of three main parts: Fertilizer, Haulage and a Farm shop in Wigton. These various business activities were eventually split up in the 1980s. Most remained in the ownership of family members, with Edward taking control of the road haulage and the name, Eddie Stobart Ltd in 1976. Under Edward's management, the fleet quickly grew from 26 lorries in 1985 to 300 in 1990. This rapid expansion gained the company the honour of 'Haulier of the Year' in 1990.
Move to Carlisle
In 1976 Edward Stobart and the fleet of eight lorries moved to Carlisle to be closer to the M6 motorway.
A lot of hard work, never declining an order, and a virtual paranoia about keeping his lorries, characterised by their Tautliner bodies, immaculately clean eventually paid off, and Edward started to get orders from larger businesses. One of the key success factors for the company was its specific emphasis on building a strong reputation and corporate image. For example, in the 1980s and 1990s, if any driver was caught not wearing a tie while on duty, he or she could face disciplinary action. Similarly, the company had a policy that all drivers must wave back and honk their horn in the traditional truck-driver fashion when signalled by a passer-by or "Eddie spotter" to do so.
By 2000 the enlarged Eddie Stobart Group Ltd. consisted of three divisions: Eddie Stobart Ltd., Eddie Stobart International and Eddie Stobart Promotions.
The Fuel Crisis
By 2002 the company was experiencing financial difficulties caused by the fuel crisis. In 2001 the haulage business had posted its first loss, with the fan club making more money than the haulage business.
Purchase by WA Developments
On 15 October 2003 it was announced that Eddie Stobart was to be sold to WA Developments, a civil engineering company that specialised in railway maintenance, based in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria. At the time, Eddie Stobart was 55% owned by Edward Stobart and 45% owned by his brother William. WA Developments was 27% owned by William and 73% owned by William's school friend, brother-in-law and business partner Andrew Tinkler. In effect, therefore, William Stobart's stake in Eddie Stobart reduced from 45% to 27%.
Eddie Stobart Group Ltd. became a subsidiary of W.A. Developments International Ltd, a parent company of WA Developments. Upon completion on 4 February 2004, Andrew Tinkler became Chairman and William Stobart became Managing Director of Eddie Stobart.
Acquisition of Carlisle Airport
Following further growth, the company had previously been looking to move from its Carlisle base and was considering a relocation further down the M6 motorway to Warrington. These plans were rejected due to potential job losses in Carlisle. Stobart had also been considering expanding into the air freight business. On 7 April 2006 Haughey Airports Ltd – the company which operated Carlisle Airport – was acquired by Eddie Stobart's parent company WA Developments, through a subsidiary company Stobart Air Holdings Ltd. Haughey Airports Ltd was then renamed Stobart Air Ltd, and Carlisle Airport was re-branded as Carlisle Lake District Airport.
Plans were announced to redevelop the airport site to include a new passenger terminal, an air freight service, a new joint headquarters for WA Developments and Eddie Stobart, and a 750,000-square-foot (70,000 m2) distribution centre.
Expansion into Rail Freight
Listing on the London Stock Exchange
In 2007, following the need for further investment in Eddie Stobart, WA Developments appointed BDO Stoy Hayward and The Royal Bank of Scotland to discuss its options. French rival Norbert Dentressangle said it would be interested in buying Eddie Stobart, but Andrew Tinkler preferred external investment, without a complete sale.
Westbury acquired the ultimate Eddie Stobart Ltd. holding company, Stobart Holdings Ltd., from W.A. Developments International Ltd. for £137.7 million: £62 million in cash and £76 million in new Westbury Property Fund shares. The renamed Westbury group then became the London Stock Exchange listed Stobart Group Ltd., with Andrew Tinkler and William Stobart becoming substantial shareholders holding 20% and 8.5% respectively of the Stobart Group and becoming Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer of the Stobart Group respectively.
In return, Westbury would sell the bulk of its commercial property portfolio, Westbury Properties Ltd., to another WA Developments subsidiary, WADI Properties Ltd., for £142.1 million in cash. The Stobart Air operation, owners of Carlisle Lake District Airport, remained outside the enlarged group, still owned by WA Developments.
With the Westbury takeover Stobart gained the Port of Weston in Runcorn. At the same time as the Westbury merger it was announced that the "O'Connor Group" was also being purchased by Westlink, at the time a wholly owned business of Westbury, from the O'Connor family for £22 million. The O'Connor Group operates a truck fleet of approximately 90 vehicles, offering transmodal road rail services at the 'inland port', Widnes Intermodal Rail Depot.
In March 2007 Westbury had also acquired AHC – a rail terminal operator and storage, facilities handling and transport business – operating on a site adjacent to the O'Connor terminal. Westbury also operated a joint venture, Victa Westlink Rail, between its Westlink subsidiary and Victa Railfreight.
Stobart Group's First Acquisitions
On 10 March 2008 the Stobart Group announced the acquisition of James Irlam & Sons Ltd, one of the largest independently owned road transport logistics providers in the UK. The company was purchased from the Irlam family for £59.9 million.
At the same time, the group announced the purchase of the William Stobart and Andrew Tinkler owned partner company W. A. Developments Ltd., from W. A. Developments International Ltd., which had been advising Stobart on the redevelopment of the inland port operation in Widnes and potential port operation in Runcorn, and a £50,000 option agreement to purchase Carlisle Lake District Airport, controlled by WA Developments through Stobart Air Holdings, for £15 million (£2.5 million in cash and £12.5 million in new Stobart Group shares). At the beginning of June 2008, W. A. Developments Ltd. was renamed Stobart Rail Ltd and became responsible for all the railway activities of the group. This is now contained in the Stobart Infrastructure and Civils division.
On 1 April 2008 the Stobart Group (incorporating Eddie Stobart Ltd) started its first dedicated operations in Ireland, Stobart Ireland, based in Dublin, following the acquisition of TDG's Irish trailer operations.
In July 2008 it was announced that the group had taken over the chilled and ambient goods distribution operations from the administrators of Innovate Logistics Limited, saving the jobs of around 1,300 Innovate employees.
On 2 December 2008, the Stobart Group announced the surprise £21 million purchase of London Southend Airport, through its subsidiary Stobart Airports Ltd from Regional Airports Ltd (who also own London Biggin Hill Airport). The deal completed on 5 December 2008. At the time, the book value of London Southend Airport's assets were £25.5 million, and the acquisition was later described as a "bargain purchase" by the Stobart Group. The deal was paid as to £10 million in new Stobart Group shares, £6 million by a vendor loan note, and the remaining £5 million was to be paid on the completion of the London Southend Airport expansion plans in July 2012.
In January 2009, Stobart Group's subsidiary, Stobart Airports Ltd., exercised its option to acquire Carlisle Lake District Airport from Stobart Air Holdings for £14 million (£1 million less than originally announced). Following an independent shareholder vote, the acquisition was completed in May 2009, and the purchase price was reduced to £9.9 million due to a fall in the value of Stobart Group shares.
On 14 September 2009, MP David Taylor officially opened Stobart's Nestlé distribution centre in Bardon, Coalville, Leicestershire, after a £7 million refurbishment creating an extra 62 jobs. The new site previously owned by Innovate Logistics, at full capacity, will hold 110,000 pallets, and 88,000 tonnes of goods. The hub distributes approx 75% of Nestlé UK's deliveries of products such as Kit-Kats, Smarties and Nescafé.
On 24 March 2010, the Stobart Group announced the purchase of 50% of A. W. Jenkinson Biomass Ltd, from A. W. Jenkinson Forest Products, for £30 million, as an equal mix of cash and shares. A. W. Jenkinson Biomass Ltd was then renamed Stobart Biomass Products Ltd.
On 11 October 2010, the Stobart Group announced that it was purchasing 35 convertible preference shares of €1 each in the parent company of the Irish airline Aer Arann, Everdeal Ltd, through its subsidiary Aer Arann UK Ltd, for €2.5 million, enabling it to have a 5% stake in the airline. Stobart Group has an option to increase its stake by a further 27.5% to 32.5%. At the same time, Aer Arann announced that it would start twice daily flights from Stobart Group's London Southend Airport to Galway and Waterford in Ireland from 27 March 2011.
Edward Stobart's death
Edward Stobart died on Thursday 31 March 2011 suffering heart problems. He was 56.
On 21 April 2011, the Stobart Group announced a Placing and Open Offer (similar to a rights issue) of 77,339,766 new ordinary shares in the Stobart Group at 155p each to raise net proceeds of £114.9 million to achieve its growth plans.
The Stobart Group also announced it was buying the remaining 50% of Stobart Biomass Products it did not already own for £20 million.
Due to a fall in property values during 2007–2011, the Stobart Group also announced an option to buy back Westbury Properties Ltd. from WADI Properties Ltd. expiring on 15 August 2011, as some of its properties, owned by a Westbury Properties Ltd. subsidiary, Moneypenny Ltd., were used by the Stobart Group for its operations. On 17 January 2012, Stobart Group announced it was purchasing WADI Properties Ltd. itself for £12.35 million (comprising £5.15 million in cash and £7.2 million in new Stobart Group ordinary shares) from W. A. Developments International Ltd. Following another independent shareholder vote, the acquisition was completed on 28 February 2012. 
On 18 June 2012, Stobart Group's subsidiary, Stobart Holdings Ltd., announced the acquisition of the car transporter logistics operator, Autologic Holdings PLC, for 20p in cash per Autologic ordinary share, valuing the company at £12.4 million. Subject to Autologic shareholder approval, the acquisition is due to be completed on 10 August 2012. 
Figures below show the recent results for the Group; their financial year now runs to the last day of February each year:
|Period ended||Turnover (£m)||Profit before tax (£m)||Dividend per share (p)||Adjusted earnings per share diluted (p)|
|29 February 2012||551.92||30.55||6.0||8.97|
|28 February 2011||500.39||29.47||6.0||9.02|
|28 February 2010||447.66||33.29||12.0||11.58|
|28 February 2009||431.06||29.72||6.0||(4.07)|
|29 February 2008 (14 months)||108.84||3.52||8.3||(22.92)|
|31 December 2006||0.42||(1.12)||6.0||58.29|
|31 December 2005||7.59||13.70||6.0||26.48|
|31 December 2004||5.43||7.56||8.0||54.04|
There are now five main business divisions within the company: Stobart Transport and Distribution, Stobart Estates, Stobart Infrastructure and Civils, Stobart Air and Stobart Biomass. There are also two further divisions: Stobart Brand and Stobart Barristers.
Stobart Transport and Distribution
Stobart Transport & Distribution Ltd (known as Stobart Transport and Distribution) is the Stobart Group's main division, accounting for 82% of the Stobart Group's turnover. It contains all the Group's transport, storage and handling services, meeting ambient and chilled distribution, and warehousing requirements across ten business units.
It operates from 40 sites in the UK and Europe and includes the previous divisions of Eddie Stobart: The original trucking business; Stobart Ireland: Warehousing and cross-docking facilities for all of Ireland; Stobart Rail: Rail Freight solutions; and Stobart Ports: Waterway and inland container ports.
The largest part of the Stobart Transport and Distribution division is the original Eddie Stobart business. It also includes the former operations of James Irlam and Innovative Logistics. The Stobart Group completed the acquisition of Autologic in August 2012.
It comprises 2,280 trucks and 3,500 trailers as of August 2012 and uses a "Pay per Mile" system to charge clients, as opposed to a Fixed Payment System.
There are ten main business units and 40 main sites in the UK.
- Alcester, Warwickshire
- Annesley, Nottingham
- Appleton Thorn
- Aveley, Essex
- Carlisle, Cumbria
- Corby, Northamptonshire
- Crick, Northamptonshire
- Goole, East Riding of Yorkshire
- Heywood, Greater Manchester
- Leeds, West Yorkshire
- Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire
- Newark-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire
- Rugby, Warwickshire
- Sheerness, Kent
- Soho Square, London
- Teesport, North Yorkshire
- Trafford Park
- Warrington, Cheshire
- Widnes, Cheshire
- Wisbech, Cambridgeshire
- Workington, Cumbria
Eddie Stobart's clients include: A H Barr, Britvic, B&Q, Coca-Cola, Crown Paints, Proctor & Gamble, GlaxoSmithKline, Golden Wonder, Groupe Danone, Homebase, InBev, Knauf, Johnson & Johnson, Mars, Incorporated, Mercedes AMG Petronas, Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom), Pirelli, Tesco and Unilever.
Eddie Stobart has a 2% market share of the road haulage industry.
Stobart Rail Freight
The Stobart Group operates some rail based services, both for freight as the Stobart Rail service, and (formerly) for passengers. Rail operations were provided for the group by Direct Rail Services (DRS), but in 2009 it announced that it was switching partners to DB Schenker Rail (UK). Stobart also operated a short lived Stobart Pullman charter train.
For rail freight transport the group owns warehousing at the rail-connected Daventry International Railfreight Terminal (DIRFT), and owns the rail-connected Widnes Intermodal Rail Depot.
A service operated by DRS started on 4 November 2008 from Inverness southwards carrying containers operated for Tesco. The containers all carry the "Stobart Rail" or "Tesco - Less CO2" branding. Trucks carrying Stobart Rail branded containers are also carried by the haulage company J G Russell which partners Stobart in this operation.
The Stobart Group also briefly entered the passenger railtour market, through the Stobart Pullman, which was a re-branding of the Hertfordshire Rail Tours business inherited from Victa Westlink Rail. Traction was provided by Direct Rail Services using Stobart branded carriages. It was launched in February 2008 but as of July 2008 the operation was suspended, presumed closed.
On 30 October 2009 Stobart Rail commenced a new train service (operated in conjunction with DB Schenker Rail (UK); it operates a 1,100 mile journey from Valencia, providing a low carbon alternative for the import of fresh Spanish produce, terminating at the Ford Dagenham rail head.
It handles 150,000 containers each year.
Stobart Estates Holdings Ltd (known as Stobart Estates) comprises the Stobart Group's portfolio of properties, including retail sites, light industrial buildings and distribution centres, office space and holdings which are owned or used in the Group's day to day business.
The Head of this division is Richard Butcher, the Group Deputy CEO of the Stobart Group.
Stobart Properties Ltd (known as Stobart Properties) owns most of the original Eddie Stobart Ltd buildings and also the Westbury Property Fund's original joint-venture property interests.
WADI Properties Ltd is the holding company for Westbury Properties Ltd, the original Westbury Property Fund's commercial property division. Westbury Properties Ltd, owns Moneypenny Ltd, (known as the Moneypenny Property Portfolio) which comprises 18 freehold and long leasehold properties. They are a mixture of commercial, industrial and residential properties primarily in the South-East.
Stobart Infrastructure and Civils
Stobart Infrastructure and Civil Engineering (known as Stobart Infrastructure and Civils) incorporates the major engineering and redevelopment projects including road/rail freight distribution centres, ambient and chilled warehousing facilities, construction/refurbishment of rail stations, sidings and airport buildings. It includes Stobart Rail: Infrastructure Engineering and Stobart Developments.
Stobart Rail Infrastructure and Civils operate the Southend Airport railway station which it opened on 18 July 2011.
The Co-Heads of this division are Andy Bathgate and Kirk Taylor.
Stobart Rail: Infrastructure Engineering
Stobart Rail: Infrastructure Engineering (originally W. A. Developments Ltd) carries out railway works for Network Rail.
Stobart Developments is the logistics construction division of the Stobart Group. It is responsible for the development and improvement of the Stobart Group's property holdings. It currently has over 2 million sq ft of warehousing under construction throughout the UK.
The Head of this division is Alastair Welch.
Carlisle Lake District Airport
Stobart Group purchased the lease of Carlisle Lake District Airport on 30 May 2009. It is operated by Stobart Air Ltd.
London Southend Airport
Stobart Group purchased the lease of London Southend Airport on 5 December 2008. It is operated by the London Southend Airport Company Ltd.
Stobart Group, through its subsidiary Aer Arann UK Ltd, owns 35 convertible preference shares of €1 each in Everdeal Ltd, the parent company of Aer Arann, representing 5% of its share capital, which was acquired on 10 November 2010. Stobart Group has an option to increase its stake by a further 27.5% to 32.5%. This acquisition then helped later on to re-introduce scheduled passengers flights from London Southend Airport to Galway and Waterford, then to Dublin, operated by Aer Lingus Regional.
Formed in March 2010 when the Stobart Group purchased 50% of A. W. Jenkinson Biomass Ltd, which was then renamed as Stobart Biomass Products Ltd. The Head of this division is Allan Jenkinson, the owner of A. W. Jenkinson Forest Products, who sold the remaining 50% in May 2011.
Stobart Biomass transports sustainable wood products (primarily life-expired timber and low grade softwood) for use in low-carbon emission power plants, producing electricity at both large and small scale power plants, including for export. The business also sources sustainable timber and waste products, which are used in the production of Biomass Energy. Stobart Biomass operates from several sites throughout the UK, with its HQ at Penrith, Cumbria.
Stobart Group Brands LLP and Eddie Stobart Promotions Ltd have various Brand Promotion services, such as the Stobart Members Club, Stobart Fest, Stobart Sponsorship and Stobart Motorsport.
In 2005, 2007, and 2012, Eddie Stobart was recognised as a UK Superbrand by Superbrands Ltd.
Stobart Members Club
The tradition of naming Eddie Stobart lorry cabins with female names, combined with a very distinctive livery, has led members of the general public to "collect" sightings of Stobart lorries. This has occurred to the extent that a fan club was formed, eventually supported by the company which arranges depot tours and lorry rides, and sells model lorries etc. For a few years in the 1990s the company ran a fan club shop in Carlisle's city centre.
To help celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Eddie Stobart Ltd, the Somerset group The Wurzels recorded a new song "I wanna be an Eddie Stobart Driver". The song graced the UK Top 100 in 1995. The original, together with a spoof called "I wanna join the Eddie Stobart fan club", are still available for download via iTunes. There is also a range of Eddie Stobart toys available.
Standard Eddie Stobart trucks previously carried a yellow and red shaded effect identity "Eddie Stobart Ltd." with the strapline "Express Road Haulage Specialist", although the strapline "International Logistics" had also been used. This livery featured a basic contrast scheme of white, green, yellow and red, characterised by the yellow "S" chevron, red and white striped bumpers, and white detailing on red truck and trailer skirt panels.
To reflect the transfer of the company to WA Developments, and with the invention of a new wraparound shrink wrap adhesive plastic application technique, the standard livery was updated and changed to a more blended arrangement, with the dropping of yellow, and the traditionalist style white detailing and shadow effect fleet name. The main identity changed to just "Eddie Stobart" with white lettering and no shading effect, with the strap line "Trans - Store - Logistics". As of 2012 the strap line is "Delivering Sustainable Distribution". Some trailers carry a white refrigeration livery, with the phrase "Temperature Controlled Distribution". The striped white bumper effect is now extended around the vehicle, and is reflective as a night safety feature. Other Stobart trucks can carry complete customer liveries, most notably for Tesco, Coca-Cola, Mercedes AMG Petronas, Pirelli or the light blue of Knauf.
Stobart Rail carry the same livery as Eddie Stobart tractor units but have a main colour of Blue instead of the Green of Eddie Stobart.
Despite news reports to the contrary in 2008, the Irlam and O'Connor fleets have received Stobart liveried trucks, although the "Stobart" at the top front of the tractor unit is changed to "Irlam" or "O'Connor", with the relevant web address in place of the Eddie Stobart one. As of 2011 all Stobart tractor units that had previously carried the "Irlam" or "O'Connor" branding now carry Stobart Group branding.
Company additions to the group, the different in-house customer liveries used, and the changeover of standard liveries sometimes resulted in odd combinations of liveries between tractor and trailer combinations.
The Stobart sponsored rally team uses a specially liveried trailer.
Eddie Stobart has a long tradition of giving its trucks female names. The first four owned by Eddie Stobart were named after model "Twiggy" and singers "Tammy" (Wynette), "Dolly" (Parton) and "Suzi" (Quatro). Names are now often chosen with connections to drivers, or to commemorate long-serving employees. The practice has been expanded to cover other Stobart vehicles, including their sponsored sports cars and the Stobart Rail locomotive "Eddie the Engine".
With the expansion of the fleet, names have become harder to choose, and the fleet now features "Tuula Karina" (Finnish), "Angharrad" (Welsh), "Anstice" and "Saoirse Erin" (Irish, meaning 'Free Ireland'). Currently the vehicles with the shortest and longest names are "Nia" and "Gladys Duchess of Overton", both on Scania R420s.
There are some exceptions to the female naming convention (including Eddie the Engine). In 2005, in celebration of 20 years of Transformers Stobart named a MAN tractor "Optimus Prime" and recently during the filming of a television series entitled "Eddie Stobart: Trucks & Trailers" a Volvo FH12 was christened "Valentino" after Valentino Rossi, the legendary Italian motorcycle racer, which caused a furore among spotters.
Members of the Stobart Members can also request a name, providing it is not already in use, but currently there is a three-year waiting list. When the name does finally get added to a truck a certificate and letter is sent to the person who requested it.
In 2011 the Stobart Group announced that they would be holding an event called Stobart Fest. The event was originally planned to be held at their Crick Depot, but a week before the event it was announced that it would be held in conjunction with the British Touring Car Championship on Saturday 17 September 2011 at Rockingham Motor Speedway. They also announced that filming will take place on the day for the 3rd series of the Stobart Group TV show Eddie Stobart: Trucks & Trailers.
On the weekend of 26/27 May, Stobart Fest 2012 will be held at the Etihad Stadium home of the Manchester City Football Club to coincide with the Stobart Group sponsored Rugby Super League Magic Weekend.
- Carlisle United FC - Shirt Sponsor
- Widnes Vikings Rugby League - Main Sponsor
- Stobart VK M-Sport Ford World Rally Championship team - title sponsor
- Manor House Stables LLP - Yard sponsor, home to racehorse trainer Tom Dascombe.
Sponsorship of the Professional Jockeys Association.
Stobart Motorsport supports various rally and motorbike teams.
Stobart Barristers Ltd (trading as Stobart Barristers) was launched in May 2012 and offers legal services.
In May 2007 the Stobart Group was the subject of controversy when it reportedly offered bonuses to its Carlisle-based drivers to work in Livingston in Scotland, to transport goods for Tesco who were in dispute with their distribution centre drivers and facing disruption to their supply chain. The Stobart drivers refused to cross the Livingston picket line.
Carlisle Lake District Airport
On 4 April 2008 controversy emerged surrounding the proposed developments to Carlisle Lake District Airport. In response to 63 apparently overly restrictive planning conditions placed on the development plans of Stobart Air, Andrew Tinkler apparently intended to move the Stobart haulage and warehousing operation out of Carlisle to Widnes, as a contingency 'plan B', asserting the redevelopment under the proposed condition would not be completed in time. By 8 April talks had proceeded, and centred on ten disputed points. On 10 April it was announced that Andrew Tinkler and Carlisle City Council leader Mike Mitchelson shook hands on a revised list of conditions for the plan. However the plans were called in by the Government and Andrew Tinkler withdrew the application.
In January 2011, Stobart Air submitted proposals to build a 394,000 sq ft Air Freight Distribution Centre on the site. Under the plans, Eddie Stobart would re-locate all its Carlisle depots to the airport, and there would be passenger flights to and from London Southend Airport, operated by Aer Arann, an airline 5%-owned by the Stobart Group through a 35 convertible preference shares of €1 each acquired on 10 November 2010. Further details on jobs and flights were supplied in support of the application in July 2011. A decision was finally reached on 3 August 2012 when Stobart Air was given permission by Carlisle City Council to develop the airport.
In popular culture
Channel 5 and Princess Productions released a program dedicated to the Stobart group, Eddie Stobart: Trucks & Trailers which first aired on 24 September 2010. Ever since, the popular TV show has ratings of 1.85 million and shows an insight into the company and some of its famous drivers on a day-to-day basis.
The Stobart Group was featured on Top Gear in 1995, when presenter Tony Mason visited the company's Carlisle headquarters. Mason talked to members of staff and discussed the popular perception of the company. Another appearance was made on Top Gear during the Reliant Robin rocket challenge. The Reliant was transported to the launch site on a flatbed Stobart truck to Richard Hammond and James May.
A one-off TV show was produced for ITV4 called Eddie Stobart - Smart truckers. Narrated by Paddy McGuiness, the show included the boss William Stobart doing deliveries to distribution centers and the firms racing horses.
Recently, a CD has been produced called Eddie Stobart trucking songs. The CD features all the truckers rock songs and artists including Queen, Fleetwood Mac and Motorhead. It made No.1 in the charts and is available from most supermarkets.
Stobart rally Ford Focus RS Elaine Katie'
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- "Stobart appoints DB Schenker Rail as provider of UK rail freight services". Stobart Group. 14 August 2009. Retrieved 18 November 2009.
- "New Freight Terminal for Inverness" (PDF). Railway Herald (162): 3. 19 January 2009.
- "Scot-rail charter trains 2008". Scot-rail.co.uk. Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- "Stobart launches Valencia rail service". World Cargo News. 7 August 2009. Retrieved 29 April 2011.
- "Image of Eddie Stobart Limited livery". Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- Image of Eddie Stobart Limited livery, Boudica[dead link]
- "Image of an International Logistics strap line". Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- "Image of the updated wraparound livery". Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- Image of updated truck livery[dead link]
- "Image of Stobart white refrigeration livery". Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- Stobart haulage unveils expansion BBC News, 10 March 2008
- Rebranded Irlams Lorry Spotting - Image of new Stobart Irlam and O'Connor tractors in Stobart colours. This has now changed again; Irlam and O'Connor Tractor Units are now being re-branded with "Stobart" and StobartGroup.com.
- "Images of Stobart trailer with Irlam tractor, and vice versa". Lorryspotting.com. Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- "Image of a Stobart tractor hauling a Knauf trailer". Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- "Image of a new liveried Stobart tractor, hauling an old liveried trailer". Truckandlorryphotos.fotopic.net. 13 March 2006. Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- "Image of a Stobart tractor hauling a Tesco trailer". Truckandlorryphotos.fotopic.net. 14 March 2006. Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- "Image of the Stobart Rally trailer". Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- "Stobart Group maps out road to success for Vikings". Halton Borough Council. Retrieved 7 December 2007.[dead link]
- "Manor House Stables sponsored by Stobart Group". Manor House Stables LLP. Retrieved 3 March 2010.
- "RFL confirm Stobart as new Super League sponsor". Wakefield Express. 25 January 2012. Retrieved 19 February 2012.
- "Socialist Worker report". Socialistworker.co.uk. Retrieved 2 December 2011.
- Stobart Pulls Out Of Cumbria Carlisle News and Star , 8 April 2008
- Stobart and Council Edge Towards City Airport Deal Carlisle News and Star, 8 April 2008
- "News & Star". Newsandstar.co.uk. Retrieved 18 February 2010.
- "BBC News - New Carlisle Airport development plan submitted". Bbc.co.uk. 17 January 2011. Retrieved 2 December 2011.
- "Stobart Group submits extra detail for Carlisle Airport revamp plans". in-cumbria. 19 August 2011. Retrieved 2 December 2011.
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