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Swallowfield PLC (BAR)

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Wednesday 09 May, 2001

Swallowfield PLC

Trading Statement

Swallowfield PLC
9 May 2001


Swallowfield plc

The following update on trading activities was given at the AGM of the Company
held today.


As expected and explained in the preliminary statement of the 2000 results, we
have experienced a slow start to the current year.

Turnover in the Cosmetics division during the first 16 weeks of the year was
12% lower than the same period last year, reflecting weak sales post Christmas
and high stock levels in the retail supply chain. However we do expect that
the dramatic improvements in service levels made over the past year, together
with the increased focus on product development and design, should begin to
make a positive impact during the second half of the year. New product
launches and high enquiry levels support this view.

Within the Aerosols division, turnover and profit levels in our historic
markets are broadly flat compared to the first 16 weeks last year. We have
invested during the first 16 weeks to grow our overseas sales base, which we
see as strategically important for the future of Swallowfield. Whilst we have
seen a 32% increase in export sales, gross profit in this market has declined
in absolute terms. This is due to the continued weakness of the Euro, the mix
of products shipped and the difficulties of entering the own label retail
market in Continental Europe. We will be reviewing this situation closely over
the next few months.

We remain confident in the full year outcome, particularly given the level of
enquiries we are experiencing in both business divisions, the number of new
product launches due to take effect over the next few months and the strength
of our outstanding order book particularly in the Aerosols Division.
Historical trading patterns also favour the second half of the year, and this
seasonality is becoming more pronounced.

We continue to focus on the strategic plans for the business and in line with
this are pleased to announce a further broadening of our product range.  We
have signed a letter of intent with Laboratoire Europeen de Creation
Cosmetique (LECC), a subsidiary of Yves Rocher Group in France for them to
supply us with technically sophisticated skincare products on an exclusive
basis for sale into the UK retail market. Whilst we do not expect a
significant impact on the current years results, this is an important step in
the future development of Swallowfield plc.



                                                                                
                

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