Profit plunges at Norbrook Holdings during ‘difficult’ year

Manufacturing and supply-chain issues disrupted product supply during financial year

In the latest financial statement Norbrook outlined further investment plans to support its growth targets.

In the latest financial statement Norbrook outlined further investment plans to support its growth targets.

 

Pretax profit plunged by 82 per cent to £8 million (€9.4 million) at Newry-based veterinary pharmaceutical group Norbrook Holdings during what the company described as a “difficult” year.

The drop came as turnover fell by 14 per cent to £237 million in the 12 months ending on August 2nd.

The group, which has been in business since 1969, is owned by the Haughey family, exports products to more than 100 countries and has operations in Ireland, Britain, continental Europe, the United States, Africa and Australia.

Liam Nagle, chairman and chief executive of Norbrook, said 2019 had been a “difficult year” for the group, adding that its trading performance had “been adversely impacted by a number of manufacturing and supply-chain issues”.

This resulted in the veterinary pharmaceutical group not being able to supply product to its customers for what it outlined as a “portion of the financial year” which accounted for the plunge in profit.

Mr Nagle added: “Some of the issues have continued into the new financial year and management have engaged a continuous process to address and reassess each situation. We are confident that there are clear plans in place to return to normalised output levels by the second half of the 2020 financial year.”

Despite the stark drop in both turnover and pretax profit he said Norbrook had continued to invest significantly in the business during 2019 and had committed £13 million to projects which brought the total capital investment levels over the last four years to £53 million.

In the latest financial statement Norbrook outlined further investment plans to support its growth targets.

However Mr Nagle has also warned that Brexit remained an “unwelcome business challenge” for Norbrook.

He said the company is “export focused” and generates 85 per cent of its revenue outside the UK.

“Any restrictions to free trade or introduction of duties or tariffs which may arise in the years ahead could have a negative impact on the financial performance of the business,” he said.

“This uncertainty makes it difficult to plan for the medium to long term; however, we have created clear contingency plans to minimise the impact of a no-deal Brexit and we believe that the business is as well prepared as possible in the circumstances,” he added.