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Ian Pollard – A Tale of Two Brewers

Marstons MARS has seen its business transformed in recent years and preliminary results for the year to 30th September produced both revenue and earnings growth which in turn led to profit growth in all segments. Statutory revenue rose by 8%m profit before tax by 24% and earnings per share by 12%. The average profit per pub rose by 2% and the strong brand names in beer continued to outperform the market. The final dividend is to be increased by 0.1p per share making a total increase for the year of 2.7%.

Greene King  GNK on the other hand found its first half to be a challenge with revenue for the six months to the 15th October down 1.2%, adjusted profit before tax down by 8% and earnings per share by 8.3%. The statutory figures look much better with profit before tax up by 33.7% and basic earnings per share  by 30.5%. Management claims that its actions have led to an improved performance in the second half,  which begs the question as to  why the didn’t act earlier. There is, they claim, still room to continue to generate significant cost savings, which begs a similar question.

Paypoint plc PAY the half year to the 30th September was busy and exciting for management as it continued to reshape the business, giving the Board the confidence that it had the right strategy. Revenue fell by 4.1% and profit before tax by 1.5% but the ordinary interim dividend has been increased from 15p per share to 15.3p, a rise of 2%. On an ongoing basis revenue rose by 2.3% but profit before tax fell by 3%.

Go Ahead Group GOG updates that everything is in line for the 4 months from 2nd July to the 28th October and is expected to remain that way for the rest of the year. The main highlight of the period is that Aslef members ended their long running dispute.


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