Global shipping and energy services company Craig Group, of Aberdeen, is rounding off its 75th anniversary celebrations in bullish mood following a strong set of annual results
Pre-tax profits for the 12 months to April 30 – detailed in accounts from Companies House at the weekend – were £74.077million, compared with £15.543million the previous year, with the latest figure boosted by asset disposals.
Privately owned Craig Group, with operations in the UK, South Africa and the US, reported annual turnover of £113.025million for the latest period. This was less than the £137.148million in 2006-07, but it followed the sale of mooring, chain inspection and subsea electronic equipment businesses to Acteon Group in July last year.
Group net debt plunged by £53.6million to £6.6million over the latest period, due to the proceeds from the sale of Seatronics, International Mooring Systems and ChainCo to Acteon. Before their disposal, these three divisions were together responsible for around £35million of Craig Group’s total turnover.
Craig Group’s accounts reveal a £60.17million profit from the selloffs , but the total sum netted is not disclosed. Operating profits for 2007-08 were £10.09million, against £7.64million previously.
Managing director Douglas Craig said yesterday the results highlighted significant growth in core operations, all of which were profitable and enjoying further growth.
He said: “This puts us well on target to deliver equally robust results in 2009. With very low gearing and a renewed focus on our primary business of offshore support vessels and international oilfield procurement, we are well positioned for long-term sustainable growth.”
Craig Group’s accounts show it continued to invest in new vessels, technology and people in 2007-08, with capital expenditure in the period standing at £16.8million. This was down from £32million the previous year, but the 2006-07 total was boosted by investments it made in the businesses sold to Acteon.
Investment in the fleet at North Star Shipping, a Craig Group subsidiary, in recent years now exceeds £130million.
Craig Group employed 1,090 people, on average, in 2007-08, down from 1,303 the previous year.
It awarded its highest-paid director £772,000 in the latest period, which compares with the £685,000 awarded to the top earner in 2006-07.