Fast growing Likewise has foot to the floor with sales growth of 28%
Soaring sales at fast growing UK floor covering distributor Likewise Group plc have seen the business move into profitability and the announcement of the AIM-listed company’s first dividend*.
Sales were up by 28% in Likewise’s final results for the year ended 31 December 2021, from £47.3 million in 2020 to £60.5 million.
Chief executive Tony Brewer said: “We are very pleased to announce we have delivered our first profit in the 2021 financial year, following the initial three years of investment to establish a meaningful floor covering distribution business in the UK.”
During the last 18 months Likewise has made significant progress including developing a profitable business, successfully floating on AIM during August 2021 and the important strategic acquisitions of Valley Wholesale Carpets (2004) Ltd in January 2022, and Delta Carpets (Holdings) Ltd in April 2022.
Net assets almost doubled from £11.6 million in 2020 to £22.4 million, and have since grown to £38.7 million, as at 30 April 2022, following the acquisitions of Valley Wholesale Carpets and Delta Carpets.
In addition to the increasing profitability, Likewise’s balance sheet continues to strengthen with a significant freehold property portfolio of circa £20 million and net cash of £3.0 million, as at 31 December 2021.
Mr Brewer also reported a positive operational and trading performance in 2022 so far to date. Distribution capability has doubled from circa 8 million cubic feet in 2020, to circa 15 million cubic feet.
He said: “Likewise has achieved a good start to the year with a continuation of the positive sales trend and while being aware of inflationary pressures and general consumer sentiment, is currently on target to achieve its objectives for the year.
“We would like to thank all of our suppliers and customers for their support and our management and staff for their huge contribution to the business since 2018 which has seen a massive change from the formative period.
“Likewise is extremely optimistic with regards to the medium and long term given the business and strong foundations that have been established to date.”
But he sounded a word of caution, noting that the economic impacts of COVID-19 and now the war in Ukraine had increased cost prices, particularly in respect to energy, raw materials and incoming freight costs. Accordingly, Likewise has implemented a number of selling price increases, the most recent on 1 May 2022.
Going forward, sales and marketing activities are supported by the group’s investment in the distribution infrastructure and material handling capacity. This includes the new Distribution Centre in Glasgow, due to be operational in the first quarter of 2023, the recent move to an enlarged facility in Newcastle and the Birmingham Distribution Hub becoming operational which will also release capacity in the Leeds Distribution Hub.
The Newbury Logistics Centre is now operational to service the South of England.
Within Valley, work has commenced to extend the freehold Distribution Centre in Derby which will provide more storage capability in addition to increased cutting capacity for carpet and residential vinyl.
The currently unutilised freehold Distribution Centre in Newport, South Wales, will commence trading in the third quarter of 2022.
Delta, acquired in April 2022, originally based in Leeds, has now been relocated to the Likewise Distribution Hub in Leeds and is now fully operational through the Likewise Logistics Network including the Distribution Hub in Birmingham.
Mr Brewer added that with the distribution capacity established to date, combined with the enhancements to become operational during the remainder of 2022, the group has sufficient storage and processing capacity to exceed its medium-term aspirations.
“With the infrastructure established and further investment in sales and marketing, the board considers that the group has the management and teams in place to out-perform market conditions and increase market share.”
Ends (622 words)
*The dividend will be paid on 8 July 2022 to shareholders on the register on 6 June 2022. The Company’s ordinary shares will become ex-dividend on 1 June 2022.
Issued on behalf of Likewise Group plc, Unit 4, Radial Park, Birmingham Business Park, Solihull Parkway, Birmingham B37 7YN
For further information, please contact:
Andy Skinner, at ASAP PR – 07990 978257
Likewise Group plc is a distributor of floorcoverings and mattings established with the intention of consolidating the domestic and commercial floorcoverings markets to become one of the UK’s largest distributors in this sector. The UK floor and wall covering market is worth circa £3.2 billion and is expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate of 2.1% from 2019 to 2024 to reach £3.5 billion, split between the residential, commercial, public and industrial markets. Likewise Group’s strategy is to focus on the residential and commercial sectors.