Stobart Group shares skid after haulage firm warns on profits

 
City A.M. Reporter
STOBART Group’s shares fell by almost three per cent yesterday after the FTSE 250-listed lorry firm warned it would fall short of profit forecasts and announced the closure of its chilled business.

The firm said its operating performance for the year will be slightly below market expectations, due to slower than hoped progress on its site development and asset sale plan, which has been hit by the dour economic outlook.

Stobart said its transport and distribution division, which makes up about 90 per cent of the company’s overall revenue, would focus on controlling costs during January and February.

The company, whose transport and distribution business has been hurt by a downturn in the retail sector, recently diversified into airport support services and biomass energy.

Stobart, which counts Tesco among its customers, said it would close its underperforming chilled operation unit following a review.

The company’s stock has lost about 22 per cent in value in the past year.

Shares in the firm closed 2.6 per cent lower at 92.55p, missing out on the broader market rise yesterday.