Communisis upbeat ahead of results

By Jo Francis, Tuesday 16 January 2018

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Shares in Communisis are at a near four-year high after the PLC gave an upbeat trading update for its full year.

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Blundell: "Plenty of client opportunities"

The customer communications and marketing services group said that both sales and profits had grown in the financial year to 31 December 2017. Net debt has been reduced from £30.4m to £24.3m, and the deficit in its pension scheme had “reduced significantly” by some £17.5m, to around £38m.

The firm’s share price reached a 52-week high of 71.10p today (16 January) following the trading update. This is the highest the share price has been since February 2014, when it was at 74p. The 52-week low was 42p, exactly one year ago.

Chief executive Andy Blundell said bright spots included the success of its campaign fulfilment offering for spirits suppliers in the UK, leading the business to expand its Newcastle facility as a result. “We are reacting to retail requirement in terms of point-of-sale and display. That will often involve a gift alongside a bottle of, say, gin and we have been successful at doing that very precisely on a fast turnaround. It’s an interesting niche.”

Communisis has also renewed one of its contracts with an as-yet-unnamed major bank for a further five years. “We aim to remain the leader in transactional communications, howsoever that is delivered,” Blundell added.

“Two weeks into the year we’ve got plenty of client opportunities and it’s all to play for.”

The company has also recently made some changes at its Psona customer engagement agency, as part of the rationalisation of its agency businesses to align them more closely with the dual-division group structure implemented in 2016.

“There is a realisation that our skills are more in the below-the-line marketing execution type of space,” Blundell added. “Psona still exists and the brand still exists.”

Communisis will announce its preliminary results in March. At the half-year sales were up 6% at £186m.

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