Forterra's September And October Trading Beats Expectations

(Alliance News) - UK-based manufactured masonry products producer Forterra PLC on Tuesday ...

Alliance News 24 November, 2020 | 11:54AM
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(Alliance News) - UK-based manufactured masonry products producer Forterra PLC on Tuesday reported that trading in September and October has surpassed its prior expectations.

The company's brick and block revenue for the two months was at 95% of the level seen for the same period the year before. Its Bespoke Products division, however, has sustained its recovery, with precast concrete floor beams sales remaining robust in the four months ended October 31.

Forterra's trading has continued to recover through November despite the start of a second national lockdown in England. The company said "demand for our products has not been adversely affected with housebuilders encouraged to continue both the building and selling of homes, and builders' merchants remaining open to support tradesmen who are permitted to work on customers' properties."

Production at all of Forterra's facilities except the mothballed hollowcore flooring facility at Swadlincote is running at pre-pandemic levels. As a result, the company now anticipates its 2020 earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation before exceptional items to be at least GBP34 million, above the previously communicated range of GBP27 million-GBP32 million. However, this reflects a fall of 55% from 2019's figure of GBP76.4 million due to the impact of the pandemic.

Looking ahead, Forterra said it remains confident that it is well placed to benefit from the strong long-term fundamentals of the residential construction market. The company has been encouraged by "the recent recovery in trading and the generation of operating cashflow this has delivered."

Provided there is no disruption to operations due to the second wave of Covid-19, the company now expects to recommend a final dividend for 2020 ahead of the 2021 annual general meeting.

Shares in Forterra were down 5.7% at 242.15 pence in London on Tuesday.

By Zoe Wickens; zoewickens@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2020 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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