Finsbury sales drop 1.1% after industry deflation

Finsbury Food Group reported a 1.1% fall in like-for-like sales in constant currency

Speciality cake and bread manufacturer Finsbury Food Group has reported a 1.1% fall in like-for-like sales, in constant currency, during its financial year to July 1, after deflation in the UK retail food market.

Total revenue increased to £314.2M, Finsbury reported today (July 17). The business was optimistic about the future, despite industry challenges, it said.

Finsbury chief executive John Duffy said: “Considering the pressures the industry faces, we are very pleased to have grown revenue and are confident that the group is well positioned to maintain its strong market position and continue to deliver shareholder returns.

‘Hard work undertaken’

“The hard work undertaken in prior periods has ensured that we have maintained our course, with the benefits of having a diversified business across channels and geography coming to the fore.”

The Finsbury UK Bakery division’s sales declined 1.4% during the 12 months. But, the division’s sales increased 0.1% in the second half of the year, boosting the 2.9% sales fall in the first-half.

Its Overseas division reported a 17.3% rise in sales, benefiting from currency fluctuations. Organic sales increased 2.2% at its 50%-owned European business.

The manufacturer mitigated the industry’s challenges by investing in ongoing product innovation, and improvements in efficiency and productivity, Finsbury said. It had “productive discussions with customers” about price rises to counteract increased costs, it added.

‘Unusual cost spikes’

Finsbury was looking for ways to reduce raw material costs, in light of “unusual cost spikes”, as was currently seen by the increased price of butter.

The business said it was well-equipped to tackle the industry pressures, and maintain its strong position in the market. Its multi-channel business, and its large diversified speciality bakery business, would continue to deliver growth and improve shareholder value over the next 12 months, it said.

Meanwhile, Finsbury reported in March a 4% rise in operating profit to £8.3M in its half-year trading update.

Finsbury Foods financial statement – at a glance
  • Like-for-like sales fall 1.1% in constant currency
  • Total revenue up to £314.2M
  • UK Bakery division sales fall 1.4%
  • Overseas division sales up 17.3%

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