Sunday 16 June 2019

Blarney group records €3.72m pre-tax profit

Retail empire: The group runs the Meadows & Byrne chain, Blarney Woollen Mills and hotels and restaurants
Retail empire: The group runs the Meadows & Byrne chain, Blarney Woollen Mills and hotels and restaurants

Gordon Deegan

The group which operates the Meadows & Byrne and Blarney Woollen Mills networks of retail outlets recorded pre-tax profits of €3.72m last year.

New accounts lodged by Blarney Woollen Mills Ltd and subsidiaries show that revenues at the retail and hotel group increased by 6pc to €40m in the 12 months to the end of January last.

The pre-tax profits were 71pc down on the €13.65m pre-tax profits recorded in the prior year. That €13.65m pre-tax profit was mainly due to an exceptional gain of €10m that was largely made up of debt forgiveness of €6.8m and a €2.4m reversal of previous non-cash impairment losses.

Operating profits at the group increased by 25pc, from €3.5m to €4.495m, last year. Along with the network of retail shops, the group operates hotels located in Blarney in Co Cork and Bunratty, Co Clare.

According to the directors, "in recent years, the group has traded profitably and during the prior year and the current year has refinanced its banking facilities which has resulted in the group returning to a sustainable financial position".

The directors said that based on the revised bank facility profile, the current and projected trading performance of the group and the potential to reduce the bank facilities by non-core asset sales, they are satisfied that the group will be able to meet its liabilities as they fall due for the foreseeable future.

The directors said the group was in compliance with all banking covenants during the period. A breakdown of revenues show that the group's retail sales increased by 2pc from €27.62m to €28m while hotel and restaurant income increased from €8.6m to €8.8m. Revenues from manufacturing knitwear increased from €2m to €2.57m while concession income increased from €302,119 to €405,935.

The firm's profits took account of non-cash depreciation costs of €267,976 while bank loan interest payments increased from €508,118 to €827,820.

Numbers employed rose from 462 to 473 with staff costs rising from €9.68m to €9.73m. Directors' pay fell from €602,831 to €526,207.

The group last year recorded post-tax profits of €3.2m after paying corporation tax of €479,384. Shareholder funds increased from €6.4m to €9.7m. Its cash pile increased from €5.27m to €7.6m.

Irish Independent

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