Kingspan on a roll as sales jump 10%

Shares in insulation products specialist Kingspan jumped by over 3% yesterday after the company published annual results beating both analyst and its own expectations.

The stronger-than-anticipated 2013 figures for the Co Cavan-based firm showed a 10% rise in sales to €1.79bn, an 18% rise in basic earnings per share to 51.7c, and a trading profit of €122.8m, which represented a yearly increase of 14%.

The profit figure was 10% ahead of Kingspan’s last forecast in November and nearly €5m ahead of most analysts predictions.

Pre-tax profit for the year was up from €89.9m to nearly €102m, whilst after-tax profits rose 19% to €89.2m.

Kingspan’s share price closed up 3.23% at €14.40 yesterday.

While revenue slipped by 12% and 3%, respectively, in its environmental and insulation boards divisions, the two units, nonetheless, showing a 25% rise and 0% respective change in trading profit.

The group’s main business — insulated panels — grew sales revenue by 23% to just over €1.03bn.

That division saw sales rise by 46% in mainland Europe, by 1% in the UK, by 7% in north America and by 24% in Ireland.

In its commentary, Kingspan’s management noted that group sales have been “encouraging” in the early part of 2014, “albeit against a weak comparative period”.

It further cautioned that while economic recovery is noticeable in certain regions, that trend remains “somewhat patchy”, with management “conscious of false dawns which have occurred previously”.

“That said, it would appear that key markets for Kingspan — such as the UK — have seen a notable change in sentiment over the past six months,” the company added.

Kingspan’s chief executive Gene Murtagh also reiterated yesterday that management has no plans to change its current Dublin-based share listing, nor switch its reporting currency from euro to sterling.


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