On 4 December 2009 Simonds Farsons Cisk plc issued its Interim Directors’ Statement explaining that the Group’s performance during the third quarter of the year was satisfactory. The Group stated that although the on-premise segment (mainly composed of hotels, restaurants and bars) remains under pressure, there are some indications of recovery in this sector whilst the other segments (particularly the take home market compaosed of supermarkets and cash and carry business) are performing well.
The Directors stated that the main focus of the Group’s management, apart from increasing turnover, is the reduction of costs and the elimination of loss-making areas. In this respect a number of initiatives have been concluded during the period including the sale of the Italian subsidiary Vita Sana s.r.l.
The Group explained that in line with what was reported at the half year, Farsons’ turnover declined over the same period in 2008 primarily in the beverages importation segment because of the reduction in excise duties on spirits which came into effect on 1 January 2009. The Directors stated that this downward trend has continued, but at a reduced rate whilst the sales of locally produced beverages are more or less equal to last year’s level.
The Directors concluded by stating that they expect the Group’s results for the current financial year to show an improved profitability over those for the year ended 31 January 2009 and believe that through the various measures being taken, Farsons remains positioned to handle the challenges ahead and improve the profitability further. During the first half of the current financial year, Farsons’ pre-tax profit climbed to €1.8 million from €0.98 million in the six months to 31 July 2008. Furthermore Farsons confirmed in their Interim Statement that the Group’s indebtedness remains at satisfactory levels and it is preparing itself for potential investments that will continue to keep Farsons at the forefront of the industry.