Animal genetics company Genus has announced that adjusted pre-tax profits increased by 40% in the last financial year to £28.0m.

The preliminary results for the year-ended 30 June 2008 showed that revenue increased from £233.8m in 2007 to £247.1m and there was a substantial reduction (£33m) in net debt to £78m (see below).

Chief executive Richard Wood said the strong profit growth had exceeded expectations, despite harsh market conditions in the livestock sector. Notably, market share in Latin and North America increased and there was also stronger than expected performance in European markets on the back of better commodity prices. The stronger euro was also thought to have been worth around £0.7m.

“Net debt was materially reduced by the successful divestment of non-core assets and a fund raising at the time of the Company’s move to the main market, leaving us able to invest in expansion to meet the strong forecast growth in an improving agricultural economy,” Mr Wood said.

“We view the market prognosis as being increasingly favourable in both the short- and medium-term and remain confident for the year ahead,” he added.

Key results:

  • Adjusted profit before tax up 40% to £28.0m (2007: £20.0m)
  • Basic adjusted earnings per share increased 30% to 32.0p
  • Board recommend a dividend increase of 10% to 10p per share
  • Market share increased across Latin America and there was a 3% increase in North American porcine market share
  • Strong growth in the Far East and robust European performance exceeded expectations
  • Bovine semen sales volume up 9% and prices up 4% in buoyant dairy markets
  • Porcine royalty income up 5%
  • Successful move to the London Stock Exchange’s Main Market, raising £19m in new equity. Included in FTSE 250 index and winner of the Company of the Year award at the techMARK Mediscience Awards
  • Non-core asset divestment programme completed