Uniq deal boosts Greencore's annual performance

Tuesday 27 November 2012 12.13
1 of 2
Greencore's annual operating profits up 37%
Greencore's annual operating profits up 37%
Greencore boss Patrick Coveney describes 2012 as a 'breakthrough' year for the group
Greencore boss Patrick Coveney describes 2012 as a 'breakthrough' year for the group

Food group Greencore has reported group operating profits of £70.7m for the year to September, up 37.3% on the previous year.

The company's pre-tax profits rose to €28.86m from €11.17m after what it described as ''a breakthrough year''.

Its group revenues jumped by 44.5% to £1.162 billion from £804.2m.

The boost came mainly from last year's purchase of UK sandwich and pudding maker Uniq for £113m.

''The acquisition of Uniq has reshaped the performance, scale, capability and long term prospects of our group, with all elements of the targeted benefits now delivered,'' commented Greencore's chief executive Patrick Coveney.

'Despite increasingly challenging consumer conditions, little industry growth, and increasing levels of retailer competition, Greencore remains well positioned to deliver further progress in full year 2013 and beyond,'' he added.

Greencore's board of directors is recommending a final dividend of 2.5 pence per share. This will result in a total dividend of the year of 4.25 pence, up 24.6% on the same time last year.

The company said that revenues at its convenience foods division soared by 49% to £1.091 billion from £732.2m while operating profits jumped 40% to £69.1m from £49.3m. It said that growth was mainly volume driven as it benefited from continued good category momentum in its biggest businesses and from market share gains.

Revenues at Greencore's ingredients and property division rose by 2.9% to £70.8m from £72m on a constant currency level, while operating profits fell by 22.7% to £1.6m from £2.2m. The company noted that a number of peripheral farm land sales in Ireland were completed and generated £2.4m.

''The group is now well positioned as a focused and growing private label convenience foods business in its chosen markets of the UK and the US,'' the company said in its results statement today.

It warned that market conditions remain challenging with like for like volume pressures in the UK grocery market, little economic growth and a consumer under considerable financial pressure. ''Poor harvests in the northern hemisphere mean that we will be again confronted with input cost inflation during 2013,'' the company said.