Updates from Utility Warehouse, KCom and United Carpets
Filed under: Investing
Overnight in Asia, stocks rose on hope of corporate profits with the Nikkei climbing 0.30% and the Hang Seng rising 0.36%.
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A quiet day for corporate numbers. First off, communications solutions player KCOM Group. Despite prevailing market conditions, the Group performed in line with expectations, the company says.
Kcom's enterprise business delivered year-over-year growth with its multi-year order backlog, albeit lower than previously anticipated due to the uncertain environment for business investment decision making, the company says.
"As anticipated, first half net debt has increased, as a result, among other things, of share scheme purchases and planned increases in capital expenditure."
Next, Telecom Plus, more commonly known as Utility Warehouse. Its half yearly report will show, claims the company, pre-tax profits and earnings that will be ahead of figures for the same period last year.
"Shareholders can expect a significant increase in our interim dividend payment, as we move towards a more even split between our interim and final payment each year in future (reflecting our less seasonal cash flow profile since we renegotiated our energy supply agreement with npower last year).
It claims customer numbers increased to 438,146 (31 March 2012: 415,489) and service numbers to 1,488,745 (31 March 2012: 1,381,023), representing annualised growth of 11% and 16%.
Lastly, it appears flooring retailer United Carpets is undergoing a pre-pack administration that may slash its rent bill. It has already warned warned of major store closures after its main trading arm slipped into administration.
United employs 400 staff via 72 stores and franchises. But many landlords aren't lowering rents and where no deals can be struck United will likely close stores.
Shares in the the company were suspended in August. But it's thought United may renegotiate some leases. Controversially, it may also be able to exit any rent detail with little responsibility due to its new pre-pack financial status.