The Investment Column: Portmeirion's small servings
Friday 16 January 1998
In August the company, which is still controlled by the family of architect Clough Williams-Ellis, reported a 9 per cent increase in first half profits to pounds 2.7m but warned that difficult trading conditions meant full year profits would be flat.
The shares have been sliding downwards ever since and yesterday the company added to investors woes by warning that earnings would now fall pounds 1m short of last year.
A special anniversary promotion rescued first-half profits in the US market, which accounts for over 40 per cent of turnover. However, sales have fallen away in the last few months, while the continued strength of sterling has depressed exports to Europe.
The home market also remains sluggish. Portmeirion does not seem to have attracted any of the windfall spending which has helped keep demand for other consumer goods buoyant, and the company remains opposed to the price discounting which consumers increasingly demand.
Analysts are also concerned at the lack of new products in the pipeline and have again downgraded profits forecasts. They are now looking at pounds 5.4m for 1997 and pounds 5.65m in 1998. The shares now look very cheap at under seven times this year's prospective earnings but investors would be wise to wait for any signs of a sustained recovery before buying.
- 1 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 2 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 The Visit: Trailer for M Night Shyamalan's latest horror film is terrifying
- 5 9/11: Iranian General accuses US of organising September 11 terror attacks
General Election 2015: Tories sack candidate who said she would never support 'the Jew' Ed Miliband
9/11: Iranian General accuses US of organising September 11 terror attacks
General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
Manny Pacquiao begs Indonesia president to spare life of drug smuggler Mary Jane Veloso about to be executed
Yazidi sex slaves undergoing surgery to 'restore virginity' after being raped by Isis militants
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
HSBC review into moving headquarters from UK 'underway'
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you recently QCA Level 4 qu...
£20000 - £22500 per annum + OTE £30K: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...
£25 - 30k: Guru Careers: We are seeking an Application Support Analyst / 1st L...
£45K - £55K (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a full stack .NET D...