ENP Newswire -
Release date- 11072014 -
The figures stated below relate to the 40 weeks ended
Primark third quarter sales 22% ahead at constant currency
Continued profit progress at Ingredients
EU sugar prices have continued to fall
Full year adjusted earnings per share now expected to be ahead of last year
Group revenue from continuing operations for the 40 weeks to
Sterling was stronger than most of our major currencies in the first half of this financial year but the strengthening was markedly towards the end of that period. That strength has continued throughout the third quarter with the euro also now weaker than last year.
This has had a negative impact on the translation of sales and profits from overseas businesses, particularly in Grocery and Ingredients. In determining the adjusted earnings per share outlook for the full year, the likely negative impact arising from currency translation, if current exchange rates prevail, will be some
Sugar revenues in the last 16 weeks were 20% lower than last year at constant currency, driven by substantially lower sugar prices, weaker EU sales volumes and lower sugar production in
The new crop for the 2014/15 season has made very good progress. The beet price payable to growers for this crop was agreed in summer 2013, at a substantial increase over the price for this year, and at a cost of some
A reduction in sugar production in
In response to the substantial profit decline in our sugar businesses, and in addition to the continuous improvement programme that is delivering cost reductions across the AB Sugar group, we are planning to undertake a further overhead reduction exercise. The details will become clearer during the fourth quarter, but we expect to take a one-time charge of some
EU export proceeds were lower than anticipated as a consequence of the deterioration of EU prices although it is hoped that new tariff arrangements in
EU sales prices have continued to fall as a consequence of the exceptional measures taken by the
Agriculture revenues were 10% behind last year in the quarter at constant currency with lower commodity prices reducing sales values at AB Connect but with continued strong growth for AB Vista driven by the success of its Quantum phytase feed enzyme. Feed volumes were resilient supported by strong demand from dairy farmers for sugar beet feed. The impact on profit from the revenue decline was mitigated by the maintenance of cash margins in AB Connect and the growth achieved by higher margin businesses such as AB Vista.
Grocery revenues were 5% lower than last year at constant exchange rates, with the majority of the decline arising at Silver Spoon as a result of lost contracts and considerably lower
The profit and sales momentum at Twinings Ovaltine continued in the period. Revenues at
With most of its businesses located overseas, the Ingredients segment was particularly affected by the strength of sterling in the last quarter with reported revenues 5% lower than last year but 9% ahead at constant currency. The profit progress made in the first half has continued, with all regions showing improvement, particularly the
Primark's revenue growth in the quarter accelerated to 22% at constant exchange rates bringing the year-to-date sales increase to 17%. This was driven by like-for-like growth, a further increase in retail selling space and superior sales densities in our new stores. In the third quarter, the strong like-for-like sales growth benefited from the warm weather, especially compared to the very cold months of March and April last year, and built further on strong trading in May and June last year.
Year-on-year selling space has increased by 1.0 million square feet from 9.0 million square feet last year. Operating margin remained in line with the first half, continuing to benefit from warehouse and distribution efficiencies and lower freight rates.
We now have five stores in
We have a very strong pipeline of new stores in
The cash flow continued to benefit from much improved working capital. Capital expenditure year-to-date is
Full year adjusted earnings per share are now expected to be ahead of last year, with better profit progress in Retail, Grocery and Ingredients offsetting the adverse effects of lower sugar prices and the strengthening of sterling.
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