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Wincanton report profit rise from £25 million to £65 million

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...like-for-like turnover growth was 4.4%. Pre-tax profit rose from £24.9m to £65.8m, partially boosted, it said, as a consequence of reducing its net debt from £57.6m to £39.5m...

Chief executive Adrian Colman said that the performance of the business was a signal of its confidence in the UK economic back-drop. “Growth in revenue is important, particularly with new wins but so is growth in operating profit. We have grown on a like-for-like basis by 4.4%”.

A strong performance in Wincanton's contract logistics division; the sale of its records management division; and Pullman Fleet Services walking away from two "onerous" loss-making contracts helped Wincanton improve its profit and reduce its net debt in its most recent financial year.

For the year ending 31 March, Wincanton saw turnover rise 3.6% to £1.14bn, from £1.1bn in financial year 2015. However, if you exclude contributions from its record management business – which it sold to Restore in November 2015 for £60m – like-for-like turnover growth was 4.4%. Pre-tax profit rose from £24.9m to £65.8m, partially boosted, it said, as a consequence of reducing its net debt from £57.6m to £39.5m.

Breaking down its business further – its contract logistics division saw turnover growth of 5.4% to £979.2m from £928.8m. Its construction; FMCG and retail – general merchandise units all reported upturns, while retail – grocery and tankers and bulk both dipped. Colman singled out new business wins in retail – general merchandise as reasons for its growth to £261.5m turnover, from £221.2m in the previous year. These included a five-year contract to operate B&Q's distribution centres; a three-year agreement for transport logistics for Halfords and a bulk sugar transportation contract for British Sugar (moving bagged sugar). He also said that Wincanton had an interest in expanding on its relationship with British Sugar and working with it on its bulk contract that Suttons Group walked away from last month. Motor Transport reported Wincanton also renewed business with existing customers including HJ Heinz and Mülller Milk and Ingredients.

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