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Sun February 28 2021

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Builders' merchant group sees jump in profitability

27 Aug 14 Builders’ merchant Grafton Group, which includes the Plumbase, Selco and Jackson brands, has seen its profits and profit margin rise in the first half of this year.

Grafton's brands include Selco
Grafton's brands include Selco

Revenue rose 11% to £1.02bn and underlying operating profit was up 62% to £50.6m, with the margin increasing to 5% from 3.4%. The underlying profit before tax grew 88% to £45.9m.

Strong performance in the UK merchant business was attributed to  volume growth in the residential repair, maintenance and improvement market. There was also strong operating profit growth in Ireland as market recovery gained momentum.

"These results demonstrate further progress by the group, in particular, the milestone of a 5% Group operating margin, which is a key point in our journey from recovery to growth," said chief executive officer Gavin Slark. The group remains committed to a growth strategy of organic initiatives and value adding acquisitions, he added. "We believe the overall outlook is positive, notwithstanding a slower rate of growth in the second half and we are confident that the full year's trading performance will be at least in line with current consensus expectations."

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