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Portmeirion Group (PMP)

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Monday 30 March, 2020

Portmeirion Group

Covid-19 and Business Update

RNS Number : 0460I
Portmeirion Group PLC
30 March 2020
 

30 March 2020

 

Portmeirion Group PLC

('the Group' or 'Portmeirion Group')

 

Covid-19 and Business Update

 

Portmeirion Group PLC, the designer, manufacturer and worldwide distributor of high quality homewares under the Portmeirion, Spode, Royal Worcester, Pimpernel, Wax Lyrical and Nambé brands, announces the following business update.

Further to the announcement of the Group's preliminary results for the year ended 31 December 2019 on 19 March 2020, the Board would like to update on the impact of the Covid-19 virus and the steps we have taken to safeguard the long term health of our business.

Portmeirion Group is a well-diversified business. We sell in over 70 countries, have two UK factories and also work with premium quality sourced factories around the world.

The Board is supportive of the government's efforts to contain Covid-19 and as a Company are fully committed to following all guidance provided and instructions issued by the government and Public Health England to help reduce the spread of Covid-19.  As a result and with effect from 26 March 2020, the Group's Stoke-on-Trent ceramic factory has taken a three week temporary break which includes one week of regular planned Easter holiday. The safety of our teams is paramount and we will take this time to work on implementing further safe self-distancing procedures. We have good depth of stock in our warehouses which will continue to supply our customers around the world. Although we are seeing short term order reduction from UK and US retailers due to government restrictions on retail store openings, our online sales grew strongly through March and we have a significant forward export order book. Far Eastern markets, which were first hit by the virus, are now starting to return to normal and we are pleased to be taking significant orders from our export markets. Similarly our supply chains and sourced factories in this part of the world have also resumed work.

Our UK home fragrance company Wax Lyrical has shown great endeavour in the past 10 days, converting two production lines at the Cumbria-based factory to making much needed alcohol-based hand sanitiser and spray. We will be supplying these sanitisers to local communities, care homes, the wider NHS network and pharmacists across the country. We will continue to supply regular Wax Lyrical ranges from current stock in the coming months.

Our management team has responded quickly to the challenges of the Covid-19 outbreak. Cash retention initiatives have already been implemented including delaying dividend payments, stripping back capital expenditure and cutting non-essential spend. Recent government announcements regarding 'job retention schemes' are also very beneficial to reducing our short term operational cost base.  Taken altogether, the steps we have taken allow us to retain significant further cash within our business, in addition to our already committed bank facilities and headroom.

We therefore believe that, despite the uncertainty that the virus presents, the business is well positioned in the short and long term.

Once there is greater clarity on the outlook and advice from governments in the UK and US regarding retail store closures and travel restrictions we will provide further updates to the market as appropriate.

We are confident in the strength and global reach of our brands and remain committed to our long term strategy.

 

Notes: This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of Regulation (EU) No 596/2014.

 

ENQUIRIES:

 

Portmeirion Group PLC:



Mike Raybould

+44 (0) 1782 744 721

[email protected]

Chief Executive Officer

David Sproston

 

+44 (0) 1782 744 721

 

[email protected]

Group Finance Director

 



Hudson Sandler:



Dan de Belder

+44 (0) 207 796 4133

[email protected]

Nick Moore


[email protected]

 

Panmure Gordon

(Nominated Adviser and Broker):

 

+44 (0) 207 886 2500


Freddy Crossley / Joanna Langley

Corporate Finance


James Stearns

Corporate Broking


 

Cantor Fitzgerald Europe

(Joint Broker):

 

+44 (0) 207 894 7000


Phil Davies / Rick Thompson

Corporate Finance


Caspar Shand Kydd

Sales


 

 


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