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Franchise Brands PLC (LON:FRAN) said revenues rose by 21% in the half-year to end-June, 2020, and all its businesses are now up and running again as coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic restrictions ease.

Turnover was boosted by the acquisition of Willow Pumps, which like its other B2B business, MetroRod, was classified an essential business during the lockdown.

Related: The Ultimate Guide to Home Improvement Franchises in the UK

Franchise Brands’ consumer business were shut due to the restrictions and group like-for-like revenue dropped to £18mln from £20.1mln during the half-year. Underlying profits (adjusted EBITDA) increased by 13% to £2.8mln, though after charges related to COVID-19, statutory profits fell to £0.9mln from £1.8mln.

The interim dividend was maintained at 0.3p.

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In the results statement, Stephen Hemsley, Franchise Brands’ executive chairman, said it had been a robust first half with a strong first quarter followed by a period of tight cost control during the lockdown period.

“This highlights the underlying resilience of our business model, underpinned by our network of 435 franchisees supporting a broad range of commercial and domestic customers.

Related: Metro Rod Franchise

“Following a successful [£13.6mln] Placing, our strengthened balance sheet will allow us to take advantage of both organic growth opportunities and earnings-enhancing acquisitions as the lockdown eases,” he added.

By Philip Whiterow

Source: Proactive Investors

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