Slimmer Stobart Group swings to a loss after selling its lorries

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STOBART Group, which sold most of its iconic lorry business in April, yesterday posted a loss for last year but said the disposal has set it up for growth in aviation and biofuel.

Revenue from Stobart’s slimmed-down ongoing operations rose 29.2 per cent to £99.2m in the year to the end of February, while the firm’s ongoing operations swung to a pre-tax loss of £10.6m, from a profit of £3.3m last year.

Meanwhile, the now-sold transport and logistics business generated £559.7m in revenues and £25.3m in pre-tax profits.

Stobart sold 51 per cent of its lorry business to an investment group led by William Stobart, the son of founder Eddie. The firm has used some of the proceeds to cut its debt pile and is now focusing on expanding Southend Airport and its biomass business.

“With capital to invest and our executive team focused on our growth businesses in energy and aviation, we are well placed to deliver good returns for our shareholders over the next three years and on into the future,” said chief executive Andrew Tinkler.

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