SIG boosts its pre-tax profits

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SIG, the Sheffield-based leading European distributor of specialist building products, has announced a six-fold increase in pre-tax profits.

The Sheffield Business Park-based business increased profits from £7.5 million for the year to the end of 2011 to £43.7 million on sales down from £2.8 billion to £2.6 billion.

Incoming chief executive, Stuart Mitchell, said: “SIG delivered a resilient performance in 2012, despite significant headwinds.

“We maintained profitability and met our key objective of increasing return on capital employed above the group’s weighted average cost of capital.”

Mr Mitchell took over from former chief executive Chris Davies at the start of the month.

Prior to joining SIG, he was chief executive of Worksop-based Wilkinson Hardware Stores, having previously been managing director of A S Watson (Taiwan), part of Hong Kong-based multinational conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa, and managing director of J Sainsbury.

Mr Mitchell says his first impressions of SIG are very positive.

“SIG has a strong management team, leading positions in its markets and a clear strategy to take the business forward. While this provides a firm foundation on which to build, I believe there is further potential in the group, with opportunities to improve performance in areas such as procurement, e-commerce, supply chain logistics and rebranding,” he added.

SIG is proposing a dividend for the year of 3p, up from 2.25p last year.