Gowan Group returns to profit

One of the largest family- owned businesses in the country, the Gowan Group, last year returned to profit to record pre-tax profits of €6.3m.

Accounts recently filed by Convest Ltd to the Companies Office show that the group recorded the pre- tax profit of €6.3m after recording a pre-tax loss of €9.9m in 2011 — a positive swing of €16.2m.

The return to profit followed revenues increasing by 7% from a total of €106.3m to €114.1m in the 12 months to the end of December.

However, the chief factor behind the return to profit was the group’s decision to close its Defined Benefit Pension Scheme.

This resulted in an €11m gain on the firm’s profit and loss account.

The group replaced its Defined Benefit Pension Scheme with a Defined Contribution scheme on Jun 30 last year.

Established in 1969, the Gowan Group — closely associated with Peugeot and Honda distribution in Ireland — also owns a home appliances distributor as well as Senator Windows.

The group also distributes a number of other blue chip brand names in Ireland including Neff, Aga, Elica, and NordMende.

According to the directors’ report, the 2012 performance “was adversely impacted by the continuing weakness in the domestic economy which is impacting on consumer demand for the products the group retails and distributes”.

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