Smiths News sees FY earnings ahead of market views, shares surge
Smiths News said on Tuesday that its full-year earnings are set to be ahead of market expectations as newspaper sales have continued to stabilise, sending the shares higher.
The newspaper and magazine wholesaler said its operational performance in the 43 weeks to 26 June was "strong", with core sales of newspapers and magazines continuing to stabilise, and positive year-on-year comparators for the months following the anniversary of the first Covid-19 lockdown in March 2020.
In addition, Smiths said the return of major sporting events, in particular the European Football Championship, has further boosted sales of one-shots, stickers and albums, which will generate a one-off benefit of around £1m EBITDA this financial year.
Cash generation and other key financial metrics are in line with the board’s expectations, it said.
"Given the continued strong performance of the business, together with the one-off benefit to sticker and album sales this year, the board expects full year adjusted EBITDA to be ahead of market expectations."
Chief executive Jonathan Bunting said: "Our performance since the half-year has been pleasing, with robust operational control securing the benefits of the improving sales and stability in our core markets. We remain focused on delivering for all stakeholders and are confident that the business is well placed to build upon recent progress as the remaining restrictions on social movement are lifted."
At 1000 BST, the shares were up 10% at 46.70p.