Cussons profit up 5% despite Nigeria currency woes

Manchester-based soaps and consumer products company PZ Cussons said its reported revenue fell 1.5% to £809.2 million but statutory profit before tax rose 5% to £88 million in the year ended May 31, 2017 despite a significant currency devaluation in the group’s largest market Nigeria.

Cussons shares edged higher to around 363p to give the firm a current stock market value of roughly £1.5 billion.

PZ Cussons chair Caroline Silver said: “The group has delivered a solid set of results with profits slightly ahead of the previous year.

“This is despite a significant year-on-year currency devaluation in the group’s largest market Nigeria and general tough trading conditions in most of the markets in which we operate.

“Our strategy of ongoing brand innovation and renovation continues to underpin the group’s ability to maintain or grow our market shares.

“During the year we completed a number of significant launches including a refresh of the group’s largest brand Imperial Leather, a relaunch of the Cussons Kids range in Indonesia and the launch of a new range of products within the beauty division specifically targeting the millennial consumer.

“In Nigeria, our experience and flexibility to ensure our products are sold in the right sizes and at the right price points has enabled us to deliver a creditable result against the backdrop of a weaker currency and poor liquidity …

“The board is pleased to declare a final dividend of 5.61p, which represents the company’s 44th consecutive year of full year dividend growth.”