News Column

Marshalls Targets Pre-Recession Profit Levels After Strong First Half

August 28, 2014

Anthony Tshibangu



LONDON (Alliance News) - Landscape products group Marshalls PLC Thursday said it hopes to return to revenue and profit levels that it achieved before the recession, after reporting a 75% increase profit for the first half of 2014.


The company, which manufactures and supplies landscape, driveway and garden products, posted pretax profit of GBP14.0 million for the six months ended June 30, up from GBP8.0 million a year earlier, as revenue rose 15% to GBP180.0 million from GBP156.5 million.


Huddersfield-based Marshalls said trading conditions continue to be positive and the group has been experiencing strong order intake and sales growth in all its major end markets.


"If these positive market conditions continue through the second half, which will be measured against the stronger comparables in the second half of 2013, it is likely that the full-year revenue and profit before taxation will be above our original expectations," the company said.


The company said sales to the public sector and commercial end markets, which represent around 62% of group sales, were up 19% on a year earlier. Meanwhile sales to the domestic end market, which makes up around 32% of group sales, rose 4% compared with a year earlier.


Marshalls said progress has been made in developing its international business and activity levels are "encouraging".


Sales from the group's operations in Belgium increased by 49%, in local currency, in the six months ended June 30 despite a market background in mainland Europe that continues to be subdued.


"Marshalls has experienced strong growth in the first half of the year and forward indicators continue to be positive in all major end markets," Chief Executive Martyn Coffey said in a statement. "The medium term objective is for the group to return to the much higher revenue and profit levels that were achieved by Marshalls before the recession.


Marshalls recorded revenue of GBP311.7 million in 2009, according to Morningstar, rising to GBP334.13 million in 2011 before falling to GBP300.9 million in 2012 and GBP307.4 million in 2013. Pretax profit peaked at GBP13.7 million in 2011 and was GBP13.0 million in 2013.


On the back of its recent performance, Marshalls increased its interim dividend to 2.00 pence per from 1.75 pence per share a year earlier.








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Source: Alliance News


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