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Three Quick Facts: AG Barr, SSP and Card Factory


Three things you need to know in the financial markets today from investment writer, Tony Cross.

#1. AG Barr interims show strong growth, longer term outlook remains positive

Soft drinks manufacturer AG Barr LON:BAG has issued interim results this morning, noting revenues up by 17% and pre-tax profits almost 23% ahead. Investors are being rewarded with a 25% uptick in interim dividends thanks to that strong start to the year. However, inflationary pressures are now starting to bite and the company anticipates that the current economic environment will start to impact consumer purchasing behaviour. Mitigating actions are however being taken and management are confident that the strategy will still return an improved profit for the full year.

#2. SSP sales still below pre-COVID levels, management confident of long term picture

SSP [LON:SSP], the F&B operator at transport locations worldwide, has published a pre-close trading update for Q4, which concludes at the end of the week. Revenues for the period are set to be 91% of pre-COVID figures with domestic and leisure travel outpacing business and commuter sales, although these are now improving, too. Full year sales are expected to be £2170m with EBITDA of £140m, slightly ahead of previous guidance. Despite the challenging economic outlook, management note they are confident over the ongoing resilience of the group’s business model with significant potential for both near and long term growth.

#3. Card Factory store reopenings boost LFL sales, plans in place to navigate economic headwinds

Interim results for the six months to 31st July are out from Card Factory LON:CARD this morning. These point towards very strong year on year performance but once the impact of lockdown restrictions are taken into account, on a like for like basis the revenue uptick is a more modest 4.1%. Online sales were down as customers returned to shopping in store, but remain significantly higher than pre-pandemic. The company is mindful of the challenging economic outlook but believes its value proposition gives an edge, whilst inflationary pressures will be mitigated with a combination of targeted price increases and efficiency savings.

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This article does not constitute investment advice. Make sure you do your own research or consult a professional advisor.

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