Chairman’s Address to AGM
6 December 2013
At the Annual General Meeting today (6 December 2013) Mr Charles Sinclair, Chairman of Associated British Foods, in addressing shareholders made the following comments on current trading for the group since the close of the financial year ended 14 September 2013:
Trading for the group in the first two months of the new financial year has been in line with expectations.
At Primark, we expect to add over one million square feet of selling space in this financial year. This will be ahead of the 0.8m square feet added in the financial year 2013 although, in the current financial year, new store openings will be more evenly spread. I am pleased to say that trading in the year to date has built upon the exceptional like-for-like growth delivered in the same period last year with further like-for-like growth achieved.
In the conclusion to my statement in the annual report I said that we expected a further reduction in profit from AB Sugar as sugar prices fall and the market rapidly adjusts ahead of regime reform in 2017. However, given Primark’s continued expansion together with revenue growth and margin improvement in Grocery, we also expected further increases in profit in those businesses which, when combined with a lower interest charge, would deliver adjusted earnings per share for the current financial year similar to 2013. This continues to be our view.
For further enquiries please contact:
Associated British Foods
John Bason, Finance Director
Tel: 020 7399 6500
Citigate Dewe Rogerson
Chris Barrie, Nicola Swift, Clare Murray Tel: 020 7638 9571
Jonathan Clare Tel: 07770 321881