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Pittards revenues fall again but diversification should boost operations

today Sep 19, 2019
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Leather supplier and accessories brand Pittards had a tough-but-improving first half with the company on Thursday reporting revenue down as much as 16% to £12.1 million in the period to the end of June.

Pittards/Daines & Hathaway

But at least the company’s profits on an EBITDA basis stayed constant at £0.8 million, and pre-tax profits even doubled, albeit only from £0.1 million up to £0.2 million. That was helped by an improvement in the gross margin, which rose to 29.7% from the 25.1% it was at six months ago.

Chairman Stephen Yapp said it delivered “a solid financial performance against ongoing fluctuations in global trading and made important progress to diversify [its] business.”

The improvement in profitability reflects its work to boost efficiencies and also its investments to broaden manufacturing capabilities and its “focus on delivering a quality service to core customers, whilst taking further steps to create a more balanced portfolio.”

The company said that it enters the second-half with a good order book, lower cost base and improved margins and looking ahead, it’s “increasingly optimistic about the pipeline of opportunities within [its] core and targeted markets,” despite the “uncertain economic outlook”. As a result, the second half of the year is expected to be more profitable than first half.

The company added that in the UK, it has entered “the bulk sampling stage with a big shoe provider and [is] actively in dialogue with others, again with our offering well placed to compete.”

And alongside its core gloving products, its Ethiopian operation has now established itself as a shoe manufacturer for Soul of Africa and Vivo Barefoot. 

“Whilst a nascent market for us, it is growing on a steady basis,” it said. Because of this, it has been investing in more manufacturing capacity and together with its own shoe manufacturing brand Ntoto, these products “are helping to achieve our objective of a more balanced portfolio.”

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