Stobart Group saw turnover in its core transport and distribution division climb in the first half of its financial year despite “considerable demand volatility”, although profit was flat.

Revenue for the transport and distribution division increased 33% to £297.5m (2012: £222.9m), with the former Autologic business acquired in August of last year providing £54.5m of this.

Stripping out the contribution from the now rebranded Automotive, turnover in the six months ended 31 August 2013 was £243m, representing growth of a more modest 9% for the period.

Pre-tax profit at the transport and distribution division was £14.3m, largely unchanged from last year’s £14.1m.

The company said the very cold spring followed by a heat wave in the summer had adversely affected volumes, leading to significant fluctuations that challenged the fleet’s efficiency.


Stobart is currently updating its Automotive (previously Autologic) fleet with new and remounted vehicles to improve its operational efficiency and profitability.

andrew tinkler

Andrew Tinkler

As part of this it has trialled a semi-trailer design suitable for moving vehicles that can be operated by the company’s standard tractor units, to allow it to better meet the demand peaks in UK car registrations seen in March and September each year.

It has also closed the former Autologic head office in Northampton.

Revenue for the Stobart Biomass division was £11.3m (£6.6m), with pre tax profit up to £1.6m (2012: £0.8m) after a series of contract wins.

Andrew Tinkler, chief executive officer at Stobart Group, said: “We are on track to deliver value across all of our divisions in line with our strategy.”

“Our market-leading transport business continues to perform well and our growing air and biomass divisions are beginning to deliver their potential.”

Last month Stobart Group banked £25m from a property sale.

Stobart Group - key figures, six months to 31 August 2013
  • Group turnover from continuing operations £330.2m (2012: £247.4m).
  • Group pre-tax profit from continuing operations £10.4m (2012: £10.5m).
  • Disposals in property division worth £25m in cash during period.
  • Biomass tonnages increased to 354,000 (52% higher than last year).
  • Group debt reduced to £203m, from £216.4m as of 28 February 2013.
  • Iain Ferguson appointed non-executive chairman; Andrew Wood recruited as non-executive director, replacing Rodney Barker-Bates (who retires at the end of the calendar year).