Rainfall Hits Gardening Group Profits

Gardening and peat horticultural supplier William Sinclair, have posted a loss as the group’s annual financial results were released. The group posted a loss of £403,000 and revenues fell by £6 million to £48.2 million. Last year, the company had posted pre-tax profits of £3.2 million.

The company have argued that unusually wet weather during the traditionally key consumer selling periods such as bank holidays and the Easter weekend, coupled with a government initiative to eliminate the use of peat, have hampered William Sinclair’s profitability: “Whilst the early part of the selling season was reasonably dry and warmer than normal, by the vital selling days at Easter and the bank holidays in May, we were experiencing unprecedented rainfall from which the selling season never recovered” said Chairman Simpson

As well hitting sales of gardening products, the heavy rainfall also held back the production of peat, and sales of horticultural items fell by 14%:  “Our [peat] harvest in 2012 was the lowest ever by the company,” said Mr Simpson.

The chairman is confident in a return to profitability in 2013, citing the group’s industry low cost base as an indicator of the robustness of the business. Shares have fallen from 118p to 114p.

Perhaps now is the time to invest in a Gabriel Ash greenhouse to protect the fruits of your labour from adverse weather effects.

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Author: Robert Smith

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