Food producer rustles up revenue and profit growth

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Revenues have climbed nearly 14% at listed food business Cranswick, reaching £1,898.4m in 2021, up from £1,667.2m the previous year.

Issuing its audited preliminary results for the 52 weeks ended 27 March 2021, the Hull-based business also recorded adjusted pre-tax profits of £129.7m, up nearly 27% on 2020’s £102.3m.

The business reported a robust balance sheet, with £200m of bank facilities providing over £170m of headroom.

Cranswick says it has enjoyed “exceptionally robust” demand across all its product categories, with its new £20m premium cooked bacon facility now fully operational.

Work is now underway on the company’s new £25m breaded poultry facility in Hull, which will be operational in FY23.

And the firm notes the Brexit transition has been successfully managed, with “minimal disruption.”

Adam Couch, Cranswick’s chief executive officer, said: “We have delivered strong growth and made further strategic progress in a year of unparalleled challenge and complexity. 

“We have supported our customers by delivering excellent service levels to ensure full availability of our products both in store and through the fast growing online channel.

“We have made a very positive start to the new financial year.

“Whilst there is still a degree of uncertainty about how the future will unfold, I am confident the strengths of our business, which include its diverse and long-standing customer base, breadth and quality of products and channels, robust financial position and industry leading infrastructure will support the further development of Cranswick in the current financial year and over the longer term.”

Cranswick has also today announced that Martin Davey has indicated his intention to retire from his role as executive chairman. He will step down from the Board at Cranswick’s AGM on 26 July 2021.

When he retires, he will have served as a director for 36 years and as chairman since 2004. Davey will remain with the company in an advisory capacity until May 2022.

He and his colleagues took Cranswick from its farmer-owned, animal feed origins onto the UK Stock Market in 1985, valued at £5m, and developed it into the c. £2bn market cap FTSE250 leading food producer it is today.

The Board has appointed current non-executive director, Tim Smith, as Davey’s successor with effect from the conclusion of the company’s AGM. Smith will also be appointed chairman of the Nomination Committee.

Smith said: “Martin and his team have developed an outstanding business and I am honoured to succeed him as chairman.

“I look forward to working with the Board and colleagues across the business to continue the Group’s successful long-term growth and development.”

Couch added: “Much of what Cranswick is today in terms of its culture and ethos reflects Martin’s character and personality.

“He has been an inspiration, mentor, wise counsel and friend to me in equal measure and, on behalf of all at Cranswick, I would like to thank Martin for his invaluable contribution to the Group over the last 36 years.”

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