Full year pre-tax profit up 13 per cent at Booker Group

Full year profit before tax rose 13 per cent to 101.4m pounds at FTSE 250-listed food wholesaler Booker Group in the 52 weeks ended March 29th.

Full year profit before tax rose 13 per cent to 101.4m pounds at FTSE 250-listed food wholesaler Booker Group in the 52 weeks ended March 29th.

In its annual results, the group noted that although the 2012/2013 year was a 52-week reporting period, the previous year covered a 53 week reporting period.

In order to make a comparison, therefore, the group said sales and profit were compared with the first 52 weeks of last year.

Total sales rose 3.5% to £4.0bn while like-for-like sales were up 3.3%.

Profit before tax was up 13% to £101.4m and profit after tax was up 12% to £83.1m.

Basic earnings per share were up 0.16p to 4.93p after equity dilution arising from the share element of the Makro consideration.

Makro is a wholesaler which supplies independent retailers and caterers and was acquired in July 2012.

Net cash of £77.2m was recorded, after paying £15.8m in respect of the cash element of the Makro consideration and the proposed final dividend was up 15% at 2.25p per share, making a total dividend for the year of 2.63 pence per share, up 15%.

The group said that the economy was expected to remain difficult in the year ahead and the food wholesale market remained very competitive. Nevertheless, it said that it expected to continue to make progress.

Charles Wilson, Chief Executive Officer of Booker, said: "Our plan to focus, drive and broaden the business remains on track. Customer satisfaction continued to improve and we grew sales by over £135m. Most importantly we teamed up with Makro. Together Booker and Makro will become the UK's leading wholesaler to caterers, retailers and small businesses. We will provide our customers with improved choice, prices and service via the internet, delivery and cash and carry. We have a great team at Booker and Makro and together we will help our customers prosper in the year ahead."

The Booker Group's share price was down 0.08% to 129.60p at 09:44 on Thursday.

MF

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