William Sinclair Holdings PLC has released its audited preliminary results for the past year.

The data covers the 12 months ended 30 September 2014 and features numerous operational and financial highlights.

Operational highlights

  • Commencement of operations at new 50-acre site at Ellesmere Port
  • Installation of state-of-the-art screening, mixing and bagging facility
  • Improved product quality
  • Healthy stocks of harvested peat to meet customer demand
  • Significant upgrade to quality and volumes of SuperFyba, reducing dependence on future peat harvest
  • Restructured sales capability, significant investment in key brands and new products
  • Cessation of operations at Bolton Fell, Gainsborough and Knottingley
  • Settlement with Natural England.

Financial highlights

  • Revenue of £46.2m
  • Profit before tax of £1.95m
  • Underlying EBITDA loss of £0.85m
  • £12.25m final payment from Natural England
  • £8.24m raised to maintain development of Ellesmere Port
  • Net debt to bank £3.4m
  • Loan notes balance of £8.7m.

Peter Rush, chief executive of William Sinclair, said: “The substantial part of the £25m investment at Ellesmere Port is complete and we now consider William Sinclair to be the most technically advanced manufacturer in the UK in terms of production capacity, consistency and efficiency. Ellesmere Port will drive our strategy of seeking to increase our share of the growing media market and capitalising on some of our leading brands.

“Solid foundations have now been built. Further investment and activity will be required to complete the modernisation strategy. However, the re-launch and promotion of our key brands have resulted in positive reactions from our customers against a backdrop of competitive market conditions. Together with the restructured sales force the company intends to rebuild sales lost during the disruption caused by Ellesmere Port’s development.

“William Sinclair has changed significantly during the year and we can begin to look forward to benefiting from the strengths and opportunities the company has created.”