Eddie Stobart

Eddie Stobart saw its e-commerce turnover more than double last year after it began eight new contracts off the back of its iForce acquisition.

Stobart bought the logistics management business for £45m last year, with £37m cash from its AIM flotation and five million ordinary shares in Eddie Stobart Logistics to a selling shareholder at iForce.

Group turnover grew by 12% to £618m during the year.

The operator's e-commerce sales for the period ended 30 November 2017 totalled £103m (2016: £49m).

Its Manufacturing Industrial and Bulk division turnover grew by 37% to £182m.

Turnover from its retail division grew 11% to £168m. This growth, Stobart said, came from additional work with supermarkets and assisting new customers during peak.

The operator's full results for the year ended 30 November 2017 are scheduled for release on 29 March, but Stobart said it had improved profit margins across all sectors of the business.

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CEO Alex Laffey said: "We are pleased with our performance during the year and to have delivered strong profit growth in line with expectations. The last quarter of the financial year saw a marked increase in contract wins some of which have now commenced and provide good visibility for the current financial year.

Christmas trading across the Group was in line with our expectations. The new financial year has commenced well with growth ahead of prior year across all sectors and further new customer contracts agreed with Homebase, Cemex and Knauf.

He added that Stobart is looking "forward to the current year with confidence".