Morning business news - August 28Thursday 28 August 2014 10.41
Paddy Power has results out today for the six months to the end of June. In the six months the betting firm got 795,000 new customers - 148,000 of those during the FIFA World Cup.
Profit before tax fell by 20% to €61.6m, and operating profit was 14% lower at €60.1m, reflecting sports results that went the customers' way, not the company's.
Net revenue though was 4% higher at €396.5m.
Paddy Power’s CEO Patrick Kennedy said the company had a strong underlying performance during the period, but results meant its profit took a hit.
“We had very strong underlying performance in the first half with accelerating top line momentum, turnover up 17% and double-digit growth in every division,” he said.
“But sports results were very much in favour of the profits and a result of that swing operating profits fell 14%.”
However he said that trend had reversed in the first two months of the second half of the year, which pointed to an improved performance in the year overall.
“The pendulum has swung our way in the second half to date,” Mr Kennedy said.
“Favourable sports results coupled with the strong momentum in Paddy Power means that revenues in the first two months of half are higher and therefore when you put the full year together we expect mid-teen percentage growth in profitability.”
Mr Kennedy said the company had enjoyed growth in market share across all of its divisions during the first half of the year, pointing to the FIFA World Cup as a leading reason for this.
He said the event was a “one-in-four year opportunity... to show the mass market how Paddy Power is different” from its rivals.
50 new jobs are to be created by two firms in Kells, County Meath - SWG and MDS Global Technologies.
The firms are part of SmartStart - a venture capital and mentoring firm.
The jobs are in engineering, research and design, sales and support, marketing and administration.
Independent News and Media also has results, revenue was €157.8m in the six months to June.
Digital advertising growth accelerated to above 20%. Its operating profit was unchanged at €15.9m.
Results also from Datalex - which designs ecommerce and retail software for the global travel industry - its total revenue was up 14% to $20.2m in the six months to June.
It names JetBlue among its new customers, and opened an office in Beijing.
And Irish Continental Group, with its results out today too reports strong revenue growth of 8.1% facilitated by a new ship.
But earnings before tax is down 11.4% to €14m.
Pernod Ricard, which owns Jameson and Irish Distillers, says sales of Jameson in the year to June increased by 12% to €4.7m 9-litre cases.
It also says there was a marked improvement in sales in Europe, up 2%
Irish IT security firm Ward Solutions is announcing 22 new jobs and a €1.8m investment. 16 of the new jobs will be in Dublin and six in Belfast.
The jobs are for information security technicians, consultants, and in customer services and sales.
The investment will fund the upgrade of Ward's managed services centre and the roll-out of new services.
And the Dublin Whiskey Company is to create 30 jobs with a €10 million investment in a new distillery and visitor centre in Dublin 8.
Over 60 people will be employed during the construction phase, which starts early next year, with 30 permanent jobs when the distillery is running.
The Real Estate Investment Trust Hibernia and JJ Rhatigan are to fit-out and complete Hibernia's 213 partially-completed apartments at Wyckham Point in Dublin's Dundrum.
Work will begin straight away with a construction team of about 160.