2 June 2000
McBride's Interim results for the six months to 31 December, 1999 showed an
underlying increase in sales of 5.9% and profit before taxation, goodwill
amortisation and share of the joint venture, increased by 8.5%. Sales and
profits in January and February were in line with expectations but, in common
with many other companies in the UK grocery sector, McBride experienced a
slowdown in sales towards the end of March and throughout April. In addition,
the Continental European profits have been adversely affected by the further
decline in the Euro. Sales across the Group have recovered to forecast levels
in May and expected sales for June are also in line with forecast. Sales of
private label products continue to benefit from increasing market share. As a
result of the slowdown in sales and the weak Euro referred to above, profit
before tax, operating exceptional items and goodwill amortisation is expected
to fall short of the £30.0 million for the 1998/1999 financial year and the
Board is reviewing a number of opportunities to further reduce the cost base
of the business.
Aerosol Products Limited, the joint venture that was formed between Robert
McBride and Nichol Beauty Products has continued to encounter operational
difficulties following concentration of production onto a single site at Hull.
The management structure of the business has been strengthened and the
situation is improving. Although the joint venture will incur a loss in the
second half of the financial year, the Board is confident that the strategic
objectives in setting up the joint venture remain valid.
The Board of McBride intends to review the Group's strategic options in order
to maximise shareholder value.
Mike Handley, McBride plc 01494 607050
Terry Monks, McBride plc 01494 607050
Andrew Dowler, Financial Dynamics 020 7831 3113