Gowan Group losses hit €24.2m

Losses at one of the largest family-owned businesses in the country, the Gowan Group continued to mount in 2010, new figures show.

Accounts recently filed by parent company Convest Ltd to the Companies Registration Office show that the group recorded a post-tax loss of €24.2m in 2010 after revenues decreased by 20% from €149.2m to €119.2m.

The group recorded a post-tax loss of €20.1m in 2009, and a pre-tax loss of €50.9m in 2008.

The directors point out that the group’s operating loss reduced from €15.3m in 2009 to €5.8m in 2010.

Established in 1969, the Gowan Group holds the Irish franchise for Peugeot and Honda cars, and also owns Senator Windows. The group also distributes a number of well known brand names here including Aga, Neff, Franke, and NordMende.

The group is “also active in the property market,” the directors’ report states.

In spite of the losses, the group had a strong balance sheet at the end of the year of shareholder funds totalling €96.9m, including €78.8m in accumulated profits and €20.3m cash.

The numbers employed declined from 455 to 354 with staff costs dropping from €21.5m to €18.1m.

Remuneration for directors, Michael Maughan, Gemma Maughan and Fiona Thomas increased marginally from €392,000 to €396,000.

The accounts show that in 2010 “a further restructuring plan was put into place” and the €1.63m costs incurred arose from redundancy payments.

The figures show that in spite of the losses, the group paid a dividend of €807,000 in 2010.

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