Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


GPG posts surge in first-half Coats earnings

GPG still wrangling UK pension liability, Coats 1H earnings more than doubles

By Paul McBeth

Aug. 13 (BusinessDesk) - Guinness Peat Group is still grappling with its UK pension liability and has offered to bump up the level of support for the schemes, while announcing a near-trebling in first-half earnings for its Coats threadmaker unit.

GPG, which plans to rebrand as Coats once it settles the pension liability, is still in negotiations with the UK Pensions Regulator and the trustees of the two schemes, which have been holding up its return to shareholders.

The investment firm's board has proposed to retain 170 million pounds across the two schemes through cash invested directly in the schemes and cash invested into sponsoring employers of the schemes, it said in a statement. The board had previously agreed to retain 124 million pounds to support the two pension schemes.

As at June 30, the pension obligation was valued at 222 million pounds, up from 178 million pounds six months earlier.

GPG and the trustees of the schemes have until Sept. 30 to make a written submission to the regulator, and any formal hearing would be unlikely to happen before the first half of next year.

The investment firm spent 10 million pounds in advisory fees in 2013 with a further 8 million provided for to deal with anticipated costs in 2014.

GPG has generated about $1.4 billion from the asset sales programme it embarked on in 2011 after a shareholder revolt over plans to split up the company along regional lines saw a board shake-out. It had cash of $734 million as at June 30, and shareholder funds of $782 million.

The investment company's Coats unit, which is now GPG's sole investment, reported a profit of 11 million pounds in the six months ended June 30 from a profit of 4 million pounds a year earlier. Revenue edged down to US$837.1 million from US$839.7 million, due to the British pound strengthening against the greenback, with sales up 2 percent on a like-for-like basis. Operating profit climbed to US$63 million from $59.4 million, driven by gains in the industrial division.

Coats chief executive Paul Forman said the industrial division is expected to keep delivering gains through the rest of the year, and anticipates an improvement in the crafts division, although trading will remain challenging. The threadmaker is undertaking a strategic review of its European, Middle East and Africa crafts division which it expects to be completed in the fourth quarter of this year.

"At a group level it is expected that, while operating profit will continue to be impacted by crafts, attributable profit will be in line with market expectations," Forman said.

The shares fell 0.7 percent to 67 cents yesterday, and have gained 14 percent this year. The stock is rated an average 'hold' based on six analyst recommendations compiled by Reuters, with a median target price of 64 cents.

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Trade Agreements: TPP Minus US Starting To Gain Ground

The Japanese government is picking up the pace on reviving the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade and investment deal, with talks scheduled next month among the 11 countries left in the pact after the withdrawal by the US after the election of president Donald Trump. More>>

ALSO:

PACER:

Prices Up 2.2%: Annual Inflation Highest In Over Five Years

"Rising petrol prices along with the annual rise in cigarette and tobacco tax lifted inflation," prices senior manager Jason Attewell said. "Petrol prices in New Zealand are closely linked to global oil prices, and cigarettes and tobacco taxes rise in the March quarter each year". More>>

ALSO:

Undertaxed? NZ Income Tax Rate Second Lowest Among Developed Nations

New Zealand workers pay the second smallest portion of their income to the government among developed nations and less than half the average ratio of their Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development peers. More>>

ALSO:

Cyclone Cook: Round Up Of This Week’s Weather

One of the significant impacts this week was flooding due to excessive rainfall amounts. Rainfall amounts topped out at 350mm over the past 60 hours in parts of northwest Nelson, with 200mm+ measurements recorded about Coromandel Peninsula, and between 150-200mm in the Kaimai Ranges. Rainfall amounts of between 30-50mm were commonplace elsewhere. More>>

ALSO:

Earlier: Batten Down The Hatches For Cyclone Cook

Although fast-moving, Cyclone Cook will be destructive and MetService Expert Meteorologists have issued Severe Wind Warnings for the whole of the North Island apart from Northland... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news