SIG Slips To H1 Loss, Sees Loss In H2; FY Sales To Be Moderately Higher Than Prior View; Stock Dips

Shares of SIG plc (SHI.L) were losing around 12 percent in the early morning trade in London after the distributor of specialist building products, reported Thursday a loss in its first half, compared to prior year’s profit, mainly reflecting the impact of Covid-19.

Looking ahead, the company also projects loss in the second half, and expects full year sales to be moderately higher than guided in May.

For the first-half, loss before tax from continuing operations was 125.4 million pounds, compared to profit before tax of 2.2 million pounds last year. Basic loss per share was 9.1 pence, compared to profit of 0.2 pence a year ago.

Underlying loss before tax was 53.7 million pounds, compared to profit of 17.4 million pounds last year. Underlying loss per share was 9.1 pence, compared to 2.1 pence earning per share a year ago.

Revenue declined to 840.1 million pounds from 1.11 billion pounds last year. Underlying revenues fell 23.7 percent to 817.7 million pounds.

Like-for-like sales declined 23.9% on prior year, impacted by Covid -19.

The company noted that trading following initial estimates of immediate first half Covid-19 impact was better than anticipated.

Further, the second half is expected to remain loss-making, but at a lower rate than the first despite some increased pressure on gross margin in the UK.

Steve Francis, Chief Executive Officer, said, “Long term fundamentals remain sound in the Group’s markets across Europe. In the short term, significant economic uncertainty remains in all of our markets, although government stimulus for the construction sector, notably in the UK, is welcome.”

In London, SIG shares were trading at 23.63 pence, down 11.76 percent.

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