Morrisons boosts dividend as revenue hits £17.7bn

Bradford-based supermarket group Morrisons said on Wednesday its revenue rose 2.7% to £17.7 billion and profit before tax and exceptionals was up 8.6% to £406 million in the year to February 3.

Morrisons is proposing a further special dividend of 4p, meaning its full-year total dividend will be up 24.9% to 12.60p.

In its outlook, Morrisons said: “After progressing our wholesale partnership with McColl’s more quickly than initially expected, we achieved our target of £700m of annualised wholesale supply sales ahead of our initial end-2018 guidance.

“We expect to begin to supply McColl’s remaining c.300 convenience stores towards the end of 2019, with some sales benefit likely from the second half.

“Our plan for £1bn of wholesale supply sales in due course remains unchanged.”

Morrisons chairman Andrew Higginson said: “In a challenging period for customers and an ever-changing British retail scene, the turnaround at Morrisons has continued to progress well.

“The team has now completed four years of important work, building Morrisons as a broader, stronger business.

“I am delighted that sales and profit again grew strongly, and that we are able to share that growth with our shareholders through increased dividends.”

Morrisons CEO David Pott said: “A third consecutive year of strong sales and profit growth, and a total annual dividend up over 150 percent during those three years, show the Morrisons turnaround is well on track.

“This turnaround is based on improving the shopping trip for customers, making Morrisons more popular and accessible.”