Grafton posts 2bn turnover
Published:  07 January, 2011

DUBLIN: Grafton Group, the UK and Irish merchant reported modest growth in the final three quarters of 2010 pushing sales up to 2bn for the year, up from 1.98bn in 2009.

Sales in the second half were approximately 1.02bn, up about 3% on the 0.99bn in the comparable period in 2009 despite extreme weather in late November and December reduced sales, the company said in a trading update for the year ended 31 December 2010

Trading in Ireland stabilised. Irish merchanting turnover was down 7% against 16% fall in the first half. UK merchanting sales were up 7% on the 1.32bn achieved in 2009. Overall, group merchanting turnover increased by 3% in the year.

Retailing sales fell 7%, consistent with earlier trading statements. Turnover in the Grafton's' manufacturing division was down 4% on last year.

The company said: "Grafton's financial position remains strong with good liquidity and positive cash flows from operations" the company said in a statement. "The improvement in operating profitability evident in the first half has progressed strongly into the second half. The group is well positioned for continuing growth in earnings as its markets recover."

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