Leekes announce strong profits and further significant investment

Family owned business Leekes Retail & Leisure Group, which last year celebrated 125 years of trading, has announced another year of strong profitability despite the challenging economic conditions and inflationary environment.

The group reported EBITDA of £8m and a profit before tax and exceptional items of £5m for the year ending 31st March 2023.

In the year, Leekes Retail delivered sales revenue of £65m with the combination of a strong turnover performance and significant operational efficiencies resulting in an EBITDA improvement of £2.9m to £4.9m and a profit before tax and exceptional items increase of £3.2m compared with the pre-pandemic 2019/20 financial year. The retail division invested £5.1m in new capital expenditure in the financial year including the substantial refurbishment of its flagship store in Llantrisant, South Wales, investment in the leekes.co.uk website and solar panel installations across its estate.

Commenting on the results, Emma Leeke, Managing Director of Leekes Retail said, “We are delighted that our positive trading performance has enabled us to continue to invest significant capital into our retail business. The completion of the first phase of our Llantrisant store refurbishment has delivered strong sales growth whilst the roll-out of solar panel installations has helped us mitigate the effects of the increase in electricity prices. The continued focus on operating efficiencies by our highly skilled retail team over the last couple of years has resulted continued improvement in profitability.” 

Reflecting on the results, Mike Fowler, Group Finance Director commented: “The continuation of our excellent trading performance across the group, our £85m net asset balance sheet which is heavily weighted towards freehold property interests, with low levels of gearing and the valued support of our banking partners Barclays and HSBC has given us the confidence to continue to invest in our diverse range of activities with a further £7.5m of capital expenditure across the group in the last financial year. Whilst there has been significant cost pressure, we have mitigated this with favourable hedging agreements on both interest rates and utility costs as well as a £1.4m investment in solar panel installations to ensure that the strong profitability has continued.”

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