Agri-services group Origin Enterprises has reported lower pre-tax profits for the year to the end of July as the company said it faced a highly challenging trading environment.

Origin Enterprises's pre-tax profits fell by 25.7% to €65.5m compared to €88.2m the previous year.

Revenues for the year rose by 4.3% to €1.52 billion from €1.46 billion while the company's full year dividend was maintained at 21 cent per share. 

The company said that highly adverse and unseasonal weather conditions, combined with weak farm sentiment, resulted in a highly competitive trading environment. This had a negative impact on its profitability and returns.

But it added that its overall performance benefited from "an excellent result" from its Central and Eastern European farm services businesses which were bought during the year.

Notwithstanding the fact that sector sentiment remains subdued reflecting the current pressures on farm incomes, the group is well positioned to respond to present market conditions and to benefit from a sustained improvement in primary producer returns," commented its chief executive Tom O'Mahony.