Speedy Hire confident going into new financial year (liverpooldailypost)
SPEEDY Hire, the Newton-le-Willows-based plant and equipment hire company, said it is well placed to take advantage of any improvement in trading conditions when they arise, in a trading update today.
The review, ahead of its annual results next month, said it is continuing to focus on areas in the private and regulated sectors, particularly water, waste, energy and transport, where it sees good long-term sustainable growth.
It’s ‘self-help’ measures to reduce costs remain ongoing, including reconfiguring its network.
And it revealed that underlying group revenues in the fourth quarter to the end of March were 4.5% ahead of the previous year, resulting in a full-year underlying revenue rise of 5%. The group said it expects pre-tax profits to be in line with the board’s expectations.
Debts have been cut by 33% from £113.9m to £76.3m, helped by the disposal of the group’s accommodation business.
Looking ahead, Speedy Hire’s board said it remains confident of making further progress in the coming year, although it remains cautious about market conditions during the early part of its 2013 financial year.
“We expect the first half of the year to be impacted by one-off events, including the Olympics and Paralympics which will result in trading restrictions and disruption to construction projects in the London area for a two-month period, and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations, which will result in a reduction in trading days for the month of June, which is traditionally a holiday-free period.
“Nevertheless, with its strong balance sheet, secured funding and ever-closer alignment to growth sectors and major customers, the board considers Speedy well placed to take advantage of any improvement in trading conditions when they arise.”
Liverpool stockbroker Panmure Gordon said it remains ‘byers’ of Speedy’s stock after today’s update.
Analysts Paul Jones and Mike Allen said: “Speedy has issued a pre-close covering the year to March 2012, suggesting ongoing self-help continues to be of benefit to the cost base and that business continues to be won at levels suggesting ongoing progress, but slightly more limited than we hoped for.
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