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Heavy Losses at Premier Foods

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Heavy Losses at Premier Foods

Heavy Losses at Premier Foods
May 21
11:44 2015

Grappling with a UK grocery market that remains highly competitive, Premier Foods has reported a loss before tax of £135.6 million for the period from 1 January 2014 to 4 April 2015 compared to a prior year profit of £4.4 million, as its performance was impacted by a £83.9 million impairment charge. Premier Foods is changing its year end from December to April.

Pro forma total sales for the 52 weeks ended 4 April 2015 were £767.4 million compared to £803.3 million for the prior year. Trading profit was £131.0 million, in line with the company’s expectations and included approximately £8 million higher consumer marketing expenditure than the prior year. Sales have improved as the year has progressed benefiting from a combination of brand investment, new products and strong retail execution.

Gavin Darby, chief executive of Premier Foods, comments: Over the last twelve months, six of our major brands have benefited from TV advertising and we have launched a number of new products to market, with more to come this year. We have also made good progress with our major customers and we now hold significantly more category captaincy roles than we did three years ago.”

He continues: “While it is encouraging to note the return of volume growth to both our categories and the wider grocery market, we expect the near term trading environment to be challenging, and our expectations for the year are unchanged. I remain confident that our strategy of investing in brands, innovation and infrastructure is the right one for Premier Foods, and see increasing evidence that our efforts are starting to pay off.”

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