SIG hopes for growth

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SIG, the Sheffield-based insulation and specialist construction products group, is predicting only ‘moderate’ sales growth for the remainder of 2011, partly as a result of government expenditure cuts.

The company has told shareholders that trading was in line with expectations during the first four months of 2011, with sales up by eight per cent compared with the same period last year, when they were affected by bad weather.

However, the company expects growth to slow from March onwards when compared with last year.

SIG says all divisions in UK and Ireland recorded growth, apart from its interiors manufacturing business. The group also made good progress in France, Germany, Poland and Central Europe, but trading conditions in Belgium, Holland and Luxermbourg continued to be challenging.

SIG has sold its UK scaffolding and fencing sale and hire business, to the French group Altrad, for £7.1 million in cash, plus a further £1 million depending on future profits.

The business made a small operating loss on sales of £25.4 million last year and is expected to make a small profit in 2011.

SIG reported in March that pre-tax losses had increased from £55.3 million in 2009 to £80.8 million, on revenues down by two per cent last year, but said it expects to start paying dividends again this year.