Global nutrition group Glanbia has reported pro-forma adjusted earnings per share growth of 8.3% for 2017 to just above 87 cent. That includes the effect of adverse currency moves and was well in line with guidance of 7 - 10% growth. The company's profit after tax came in at €329.4m - although there was a one off gain there from the disposal of a 60% share in Dairy Ireland.

Siobhán Talbot, Group Managing Director of Glanbia, said the results were complex but the company focuses on its "pro-forma results". "It was the eighth year of double digit growth in 2017. We're particularly pleased with the top line growth where we had 9% revenue growth across all business segments," she said.

Ms Talbot explained the logic behind the creation of the Dairy Ireland brand and the disposal of 60% of it to the Glanbia Co-Operative society. "The idea was to essentially amalgamate into one organisation the totality of our primary dairy activities in Ireland. We're the largest dairy processor here. We have now integrated what was previously our ingredients business, our branded consumer business - brands like Avonmore and Kilmeden - and our agribusiness. The logic is to have one business to encompass the totality of the Irish supply chain. That business will support the growth ambitions of the Irish farmer supply base," she explained.

Glanbia plc now focuses mainly on the sports and performance nutrition market and is the largest US cheese producer. The 2017 figures were impacted by adverse currency moves, particularly in relation to the US dollar.
"For a number of years, we've looked at our performance in what we call constant currency and that essentially takes out the ebbs and flows. Over 80% of our earnings are dollar denominated. We've seen years of high reported numbers when the dollar was strong," Ms Talbot stated.

MORNING BRIEFS - Bank of Ireland is forecasting economic growth of 4.7% for 2018, up from a previous estimate of 3.8% and well above the official department of finance projection of 3.5% growth. The UK economy on the other hand is projected to grow by 1.7%, against the backdrop of elevated inflation and ongoing Brexit negotiations.

*** 14,000 of the 18,000 loans that make up Project Glas - Permanent TSB's portfolio of loans that it plans to sell - are on private dwellings. The bank said the loans have a total value of €3.7 billion - €1 billion of that relates to investment properties. Fianna Fáil is insisting that so-called vulture funds are properly regulated before any sale takes place.

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