Speedy hails ‘positive’ trading performance ahead of results announcement

Speedy Hire

Plant and equipment hire group, Speedy, said it expects to report adjusted profit before tax for the year to March 31, 2023, in line with the board’s expectations.

The Newton-le-Willows-based group said it has achieved a positive trading performance.

The group performed well during the year, with revenue up circa 14% over FY2022. Revenue growth was underpinned by rate increases to counter inflationary cost pressures alongside a strong performance from the services business.

Against the backdrop of the continuing challenging trading environment, the group has experienced some softening of demand in recent weeks, although with a strong pipeline of new business it remains confident of future revenue growth.

Group initiatives, including an ongoing operational review and a management restructuring, will improve the efficiency of operations and are progressing well, it said.

The cost of these items in FY2023, including the depot consolidations already announced, will all be accounted for as exceptional items, and is expected to be around £6.6m and will deliver associated benefits in the region of £5m per annum.

The combination of these actions and contract momentum means Speedy enters FY2024 with confidence, it said.

Following Improved working capital management in the second half of the financial year, the group expects to report net debt at the year end of less than £94m.

In March 2023 the company concluded its share buyback programme to purchase an aggregate value of up to £30,000,000 of the company’s ordinary shares. The total number of shares repurchased (67,713,058), represents 12.8% of the company’s issued share capital on the day prior to the commencement of the share buyback programme in January 2022.

The weighted average number of shares for FY2023 for the purposes of calculating adjusted earnings per share4 is circa 485,297,297.

As announced on February 8, 2023, the board instigated an external investigation into the issue identified with non-itemised assets, including a review of controls and accounting procedures. The investigation continues to progress and a further update will be provided with the final results announcement on June 6, 2023.

Speedy said management has taken corrective action and implemented new controls. The board is reassured that an asset count at the end of March 2023, as part of the new controls, did not identify the need for an increase in existing provisions.

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