Decline in profits at health retailer
Expansion costs at the Irish arm of health and wellness retailer, Holland & Barrett, last year contributed to pre-tax profits decreasing by 31pc to €3.79m.
The retailer increased the number of stores here in 2017 from 52 to 54 and this contributed to revenues increasing by 3pc from €34m to €35.1m in the 12 months to the end of September last.
According to the directors' report, they state that both the level of business and the year-end financial position remain satisfactory.
Holland & Barrett is Europe's leading retailer of vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements and operates more than 620 stores in Ireland and the UK.
Last August, the group was purchased by LetterOne, controlled by Russian tycoon Mikhail Fridman, for £1.74bn.
During last year, the Irish firm constructed a new warehouse facility in Dublin "to cater for the expansion of the company, facilitating deliveries to stores both in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland".
The directors state that the management of the business continues to monitor closely the cost base and the movement of the sterling exchange rate compared to the Euro.
The Irish firm's earnings before interest tax, depreciation and amortisation (ebitda) last year totalled €4.92m compared to €6.3m in 2016.
Numbers employed increased from 277 to 294 during the year with staff costs going up from €6.59m to €7.76m
The company's accumulated profits at the end of September had increased from €31.86m to €35.1m.
The company's cash pile increased from €1.88m to €5m.