Thursday 30 August 2018 11:52 am

Eddie Stobart accelerates growth with new contract wins

Logistics group Eddie Stobart reported strong revenue growth and reiterated its expectations for the full year this morning.

Due to a technical error posting the results to the stock exchange, figures were not uploaded until 9.20am. Shares were up 1.1 per cent following the release.

The figures

Revenue grew 25.3 per cent to £359.3m in the six months to 31 May.

This was driven by growth in three of the group's four key sectors. E-commerce saw the biggest increase as revenue in the division more than doubled. Meanwhile retail and manufacturing both racked up double-digit growth.

The consumer sector was the only one of the core sectors to report lower revenue, due to the loss of a contract with drinks producer Britvic. However the contract was regained in May this year.

Profit for the period was £1.4m, compared to a loss of £6.3m this time last year.

Read more: Two House of Fraser distribution centres have reopened

Why it's interesting

Eddie Stobart and other logistics companies have seen new opportunities open up from the rise of online retail, adding complexity to supply chains. It has been repositioning its network and warehouse portfolio to accommodate new customer volumes.

In the year to date, the group has won new contracts with a value of £158m annually, including Knauf and PepsiCo. Benefits of the new contracts are expected to flow through in the second half of the year.

In June, the company bought The Pallet Network, a provider of pallet distribution services. This puts Eddie Stobart in a new space, opening potential cross-selling opportunities.

What Eddie Stobart said

Chief executive Alex Laffey said: "We are pleased to have delivered a strong first-half performance as we continue to implement our strategy of becoming a leading provider of end-to-end supply chain solutions. This has been demonstrated year to date, as we have won new contracts with blue chip customers adding an annualised £158m of new business."

Read more: PepsiCo buys SodaStream for $3bn