Portmeirion breaks sales record for seventh year in a row

Michael Swearingen
Portmeirion owns brands including Spode and Royal Worcester (Source: Getty)

Ceramics group Portmeirion hailed its seventh consecutive year of record sales in spite of the slowdown South Korea and challenges presented by the building of a new kiln at its Stoke-on-Trent factory.

The company, whose brands include Spode, Royal Worcester and Pimpernel, posted an 11.9 per cent rise in revenues to £68.7m in the year to 31 December, largely driven by its success in the US, which is responsible for nearly a third of the company's revenue.

Meanwhile pre-tax profits rose by 13.6 per cent to £8.6m compared with £7.6m last year.

Chairman Dick Steel said the group remains optimistic of their future in spite of the impending EU referendum citing that only three per cent of their revenue comes from the EU.

Still, the upcoming US election and an 18.1 per cent revenue drop in South Korea present some uncertainty in their future, with the company warning that the outcome of the US presidential race could dampen consumer sentiment.

In South Korea, Portmeirion said a weak economy had hit sales of luxury companies, resulting in the company's first notable sales slowdown since its started trading in the country two decades ago.

"We believe that this market is now stabilising for us. Despite such a drop in our third largest market we have still achieved overall sales growth, this is because of our emphasis on diversified global sales," the company said.

The company also finished installing its new kiln at its Stoke-on-Trent factory, which has helped boost production by 20,000 pieces per week.

Portmeirion said its outlook for 2016 remained positive, reflected by its decision to raise dividends to 30 pence a share.

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