QIHL plans significant investment as sales surge

Quinn Industrial Holdings Limited – QIHL — the packaging and construction products group to which founder and former tycoon Seán Quinn returned to work over a year ago — said profits, sales and jobs had all increased as it planned further significant investments in its operations.

QIHL chief executive Liam McCaffrey would, however, make no comment on the reported strained relations in recent months between Mr Quinn and the management and new owners of QIHL.

He also refused to comment on whether managers or owners had struck any new understanding with Mr Quinn on the future of the group.

The holding company controls 12 operations and employs 743 people across a swathe of jobs-starved Midlands counties, including Fermanagh, Cavan and Longford, as well as in Kent in England.

It was bought in late 2014 by New York and Connecticut-based investment funds, Brigade Capital, Contrarian Capital and Silver Point.

The funds which specialise in managing distressed debt and assets own up to 80% of QIHL and the rest of the group is controlled by its managers.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation rose to €16.6m in 2015 from €6.2m in the previous year.

QIHL said it swung back to a pre-profit of €5.9 million before exceptional charges and posted a net profit of around €3m in 2015, compared with a pre-tax loss of €14.6m loss in 2014.

Sales climbed by 25% to €202.7m.

Mr McCaffrey said both parts of the group had had “a good performance”, exceeding expectations of management when the businesses were acquired.

Their value had increased, he said.

The US investors were “very comfortable” with the outlook of the businesses, he said, as shown by plans to invest a further €14m into operations through 2016.

He said the group was in the process of hiring more people.

“The continuing support of our investor group for QIHL’s ongoing capital investment programme marks a major endorsement of our strategic direction and future prospects and will assist in our target of delivering a further improvement in profitability and employment in 2016,” Mr McCaffrey said.


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