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TOP NEWS: AG Barr annual profit up; Robin Barr ends 6 decades in post

28th Mar 2023 10:17

(Alliance News) - AG Barr PLC on Tuesday reported increases in both annual revenue and profit as it lifted its dividend by almost 10%, and announced that Robin Barr will step down after 62 years with the company.

The Cumbernauld, Scotland-based soft drinks maker said annual revenue rose 18% in the financial year that ended on January 29 to GBP317.6 million from GBP268.6 million the year before.

Pretax profit rose 5.2% to GBP44.4 million from GBP42.2 million, as adjusted pretax profit increased by 13% to GBP43.5 million from GBP38.4 million a year earlier.

Earnings per share rose 21% to 30.47 pence from 25.09p the year before.

The Rubicon and Irn-Bru maker declared a final dividend of 10.6 pence, bringing the annual total to 13.1p, which is up 9.2% from 12.0p the year prior.

"We are now in an investment phase, designed to capitalise on the strategic growth opportunities ahead," said Chief Executive Officer Roger White.

For financial 2024, AG Barr expects operating margins to be hit by its investments, as well as cost inflation, and the "initial dilutive impact" from the Boost acquisition. However, the company said it remains confident of delivering further revenue and profit growth in the year ahead in line with board expectations.

Back in December, Barr bought Boost Drinks Holdings Ltd for an initial payment of GBP20 million.

"This growth and investment phase will support the rebuilding of our operating margin over the medium term and the creation of a stronger and more sustainable business," CEO White added.

Additionally, the firm said Non-Executive Director Robin Barr will not seek re-election at its annual general meeting in May.

Barr has been with the company for 62 years, having been executive chair for 31 years until 2009.

The company said Julie Barr will relinquish her company secretarial duties and stand for election at the AGM, joining the board in May.

AG Barr was founded in Falkirk in 1875 by Robert Barr. The AG comes from son Andrew Greig Barr, who built the company's first drinks factory in Glasgow and oversaw the launch of what then was called 'Iron Brew'.

Shares were down 3.1% at 525.00 pence each on Tuesday morning in London.

By Xindi Wei, Alliance News reporter

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