DS Smith first-half profit jumps despite 'challenging' backdrop
Paper and packaging group DS Smith posted a rise in first-half profit on Thursday despite a "challenging" backdrop as it reaped the benefits of a rise in online shopping.
In the six months to the end of October, pre-tax profit jumped 30% to £213m on revenue of £3.2bn, up 4% on the same period a year ago. Adjusted earnings per share rose 5% to 17.4p and the interim dividend was lifted 4% to 5.4p a share.
The company said it saw market share gains during the half, driven by multinational fast-moving consumer goods companies and e-commerce customers.
Chief executive Miles Roberts said: "Our leadership in e-commerce and sustainable packaging solutions has enabled us to perform well despite a difficult macro environment and volatility in paper pricing. The continued growth in margin and strong pricing discipline has been particularly pleasing as we deepen our relationships with FMCG customers and grow market share.
"Assuming current macro-economic conditions prevail, we anticipate an acceleration of volume growth in the second half of the year which, together with the resilience of our business model, supports our expectation of further growth in the year."