Shares of Sheffield-based building materials supplier SIG plc rose about 7% on Wednesday after it published a trading update for the January 1 to April 30 period ahead of its May 13 AGM showing group sales soared 29% to £700 million in the period.
SIG also said it expects full year revenues to be slightly ahead of prior expectations and profits to be higher than previously expected.
“After a solid start in January and February sales volumes then picked up strongly, and March and April traded ahead of management’s expectations …” said SIG.
“Performance for the year to date has been ahead of expectations. Group sales were 29% up on 2020 for the four-month period.
“They were 4% lower than the same period in 2019, and flat against 2019 in March and April.”
In its outlook, SIG said: “Whilst the evolving Covid-19 backdrop will continue to create uncertainty in the short term, more so in our EU markets than the UK, the strong demand across territories and sectors in the first four months of the year was encouraging and gives the board increased confidence for the full year performance.
“The momentum we have seen through March and April, together with improving visibility on the near-term order book, means that we now expect the group to deliver an underlying operating profit in the first half, returning the group to profitability earlier than expected.
“Given the prevailing macro-economic uncertainties, we retain a cautious view of the second half at this stage.
“We do however continue to expect the second half to be both profitable and cash generative, and in light of the stronger than anticipated recent performance we now expect full year revenues to be slightly ahead of prior expectations, and profits also to be higher than previously expected.”