Grafton Group generates record profit amid construction sector growth

credit irish building magazine

Credit: Irish Building Magazine

DIY and construction supplier Grafton Group increased its operating profit by 15 per cent to a record €163.7 million in 2015.

The group which operates in Ireland, the UK, Belgium and the Netherlands owns Irish based companies Woodies (hardware/DIY), Chadwick’s builders providers, Heiton Buckley heat merchants and PVC manufacturer MFP amongst others.

Turnover at the company jumped to €2.86bn, an increase of six per cent on the 2014 figure of €2.21bn.

Grafton’s Irish revenue for 2015 was €354m, showing that the DIY and construction sectors have returned to a “growth path.”

Grafton Group CEO Gavin Slark said the “the merchanting business in Ireland reported a significant increase in revenue and operating profit for the second successive year against the backdrop of a strong recovery in the economy.

In Ireland Grafton group’s operating profit increased by 13.2pc to €23.9m (2014: €21.29m).

Grafton group attributed its growth in the Irish market to increased volumes in the residential RMI (renovation, maintenance, Improvement) market.

In their annual report issued today Grafton Group also credited “Infrastructure projects, refurbishment of commercial properties and the agricultural sector were other important markets that showed gains in revenue. A subdued recovery in house building was focused on the construction of single dwellings in provincial locations and on small in-fill housing developments in Dublin.”

The report also forecasted a bright future for the construction/DIY industry saying “the overall outlook in Ireland is favourable as growth in employment and incomes in a low inflation and low interest rate environment should support the ongoing improvement in the economy.”

However as an Irish company which is listed on the London Stock Exchange Grafton Group’s continued success into the future will hinge far more on the result of the upcoming Brexit referendum than continued growth in the Irish economy.

A British exit from the EU could “have downside risks for its British business including volatility in financial markets and weigh on UK consumer confidence and demand.”

Niall Connolly

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