Findel expects full year profits to be substantially ahead
In a post-close trading statement, the group also said that sales for the full year ending 28 March 2014 were 5% up on the previous year. Sales in the second half rose 4.7% year-on-year.
Express Gifts saw sales growth of 9.7% in the year and a “strong profit improvement”. Findel said sales growth had been balanced with an improvement in product gross margins as the year progressed. Customer numbers were also better, rising by 8.3% in the calendar year to December 2013.
Within the group’s education supplies division sales increased by 6.2% on the prior year with a significant increase in profits as the business won further local authority contracts.
Meanwhile, trading at Findel's Kleeneze business remained challenging with full year sales declining by 5.4% on the previous year.
After a poor first-half performance, Kitbag is expected to report an increased loss over the prior year after full year sales dropped by 4.5%. However, trading since January has shown signs of improvement and the division now expects to see smaller losses and an improvement in sales in the coming year.
For the full year, Findel expects group profit before tax to be in line with current market expectations of between £22 million and £22.5 million.
“Overall the Board continues to be very encouraged by the group's progress and the significant recovery in the group's prospects over the last three years,” Findel said.
The group is expected to announce its full year results on 4 June 2014.
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