LONDON (Alliance News) - Pinewood Shepperton PLC saw profit rise in the year to end-March, and expressed confidence for the new year as it continued to see high demand for its facilities and it won permission to expand its Pinewood Studios site.
The company operates stage and studio space and provides services for the film and television industries.
Pinewood posted a total dividend of 2.5 pence, up from 2.0 pence in the previous year.
The company posted a pretax profit of GBP3.6 million, up from GBP1.3 million, as revenue rose to GBP64.1 million from GBP55.0 million, although this was somewhat offset by higher cost of sales. In the previous year the company posted exceptional expenses of GBP3.0 million, primarily related to its exit from its Teddington Studio site during 2013.
The company was finally granted planning permission for the planned expansion of its Pinewood Studios site in Buckinghamshire earlier in the month, after a long battle with local residents. It altered and scaled back its plans for the expansion in 2012 after an earlier version was rejected by Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles.
Pinewood said the expansion would address increasing global demand for production facilities in the UK and help to deliver growth for its company.
Favourable tax incentives have increasingly made the UK an attractive site for film and television production. Whilst Pinewood has seen strong demand from large productions, constraints on space have been an issue for the company, meaning it has not been able to accommodate several productions during the year.
The company saw Film revenues of GBP37.4 million, up from GBP35.2 million, due to high levels of demand and the addition of its new Q stage at Pinewood Studios. Pinewood Shepperton's facilities together saw occupancy of 81%, compared to 76% in the previous year.
The largest production at Pinewood Studios was Disney's 'Cinderella', while at its Shepperton in Surrey, the largest production was Marvel's 'Guardians of the Galaxy.' Fox's 'Exodus' and Marvel's 'Avengers: Age of UIltron' also filmed at the company's studios during the year.
Television revenues were GBP6.2 million, up from GBP5.2 million, as the company worked on productions including Channel 4's 'The Taste' and BBC's 'The Voice.' Pinewood said it has received a number of interest from high-end television productions following the introduction of new tax incentives. However it said it has not been able to accommodate these productions due to a lack of space.
Revenue from the company's Media Investment arm were GBP14.9 million, up from GBP8.9 million in the previous year, boosted by revenues from film production companies as Pinewood invested in independent productions 'Robot Overlords', 'The Riot Club', 'Pressure', 'Kill Your Friends' and 'Spooks: The Greater Good.'
Pinewood said it had made an "excellent" start to the new year, with demand for its UK facilities at an "unprecedented level."
Shares in Pinewood Shepperton were trading down 1.8% at 473.75 pence Thursday morning.