Marine group reports annual performance ‘slightly ahead’ of expectations

Lancaster-based Hertsford Capital said the group performance has been slightly ahead of market expectations, in a trading update today.

In March the business completed its reverse takeover of OTAQ Group, the marine technology products and solutions group for the global aquaculture and offshore oil and gas industries.

Reporting a trading update for OTAQ for the 12 months ended March 31, 2020, it said the results will reflect a doubling of revenues, a positive adjusted EBITDA and net cash of approximately £3m.

OTAQ has continued its product development initiatives and broadening of its target markets in pursuit of its ambition to build a significant business in the global aquaculture market.

Today’s statement said the new financial year has coincided with the practicalities of operating in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

OTAQ was given special dispensation for staff to be allowed to continue the supply of critical products and services and has stringently followed government guidance on working practices and social distancing for the safety and wellbeing of its staff and customers.

Today’s update said OTAQ Aquaculture, which represents approximately 60% of group revenue, has started the year well with around 63% of fiscal year 2021 revenues secured as at the end of May.

OTAQ Connectors is trading in line with the board’s expectations but OTAQ Offshore is exposed to the oil and gas markets which are showing signs of slowing due to the declining oil price and the broader limitations on the oil and gas sector resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The board believes it is too early to evaluate the ultimate impact on profits of the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, it is satisfied that OTAQ has the resources to navigate the disruptions over the medium to long term as it has long-term contracted revenues and cash resources of £3m at March 31, 2020.

The company expects to announce its results for the 12 months to March 31, 2020 in the latter half of July, subject to completion of the audit.