Kerry Group shares rally on annual profit growth

Kerry Group shares rally on annual profit growth

Irish based food production company Kerry Group Plc (LON:KYGA) have seen their share price rally in morning trading on Wednesday, as the company published a modest annual growth in profits on the back of a sales boost which kept margins healthy.

In spite of challenging conditions, the company posted a pre-tax profit for the year through December of 617.9 million EUR, a slight rise of 0.8% on-year. This however, does not do justice to its noteworthy growth in sales. Headwinds aside, the company booked an impressive spike of 3.1% in revenue on-year, coming to 6.6 billion EUR.

“We are pleased with our performance in 2018, with volume growth well ahead of our markets, underlying margin expansion in line with expectations and adjusted earnings per share growth of 8.6% in constant currency,” said chief executive Edmond Scanlon.

“In 2019 we expect to deliver adjusted earnings per share growth of 6% to 10% on a constant currency basis.”

Kerry Group as a portfolio candidate

The firm announced a final dividend of 49.2c per share which brought total dividends up 12% on-year -with 2018 dividends totalling 70.2c. Further, in spite of currency headwinds, sales grew 3.5% while trading margins were maintained at 12.2%.

The company’s shares are trading up 1.8 EUR or 2.01% in morning trading to 91.5 EUR 20/02/19 11:05 GMT.