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Nichols strategy update

Soft drinks maker Nichols revealed that Vimto International grew by 16% in 2022. The updated strategy will mean that the OutofHome division will be slimmed down and the focus will be the packaged drinks business. 

In 2022, group revenues grew by 14% to £164.9m and pre-tax profit grew by a similar percentage to £25m. The dividend was increased by one-fifth to 27.7p a share.

The core UK business increased revenues by 3% on the back of the strength of the Vimto brand. The benefits of the OutofHome business restructuring will show through in 2024. 

Singer forecasts flat 2023 pre-tax profit of £25.2m. Net cash could be £63.6m by the end of 2023.  

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Victorian Plumbing growing again

Victorian Plumbing says revenues have grown by 10% in the first five months of the current financial year. Margins are also improving.

The plumbing supplies retailer is one of the poorer preforming AIM flotations from 2021.That was because it floated at the peak of the lockdown DIY market. Ever since then, trading has been disappointing. The latest news suggests that a recovery has commenced. Victorian Plumbing's market share is around 19%. A 20 year lease has been agreed on a new distribution centre in Lancashire.

Peel Hunt forecasts a recovery in pre-tax profit from £15.7m to £17.9m, which is still well below the 2020-21 level. The interim figures will be published on 23 May. 

SigmaRoc plans investment 

Construction materials supplier SigmaRoc raised £30m from a placing and retail offer at 54p a share, which was a premium to the then market price. Selling three existing company assets will raise a further £9m.


Management says that the money will be invested in acquisitions and projects that could produce additional annualised pre-tax profit of £6m. Overall, the fundraising and the subsequent deals should be slightly earnings enhancing over the medium-term. Net debt remains high but could fall below £170m by the end of the year.


The chief executive of the Nordkalk subsidiary bought 27,500 shares at 57.797p each after the placing was announced.

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