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Grafton begins series of investor meetings

Listed do-it-yourself specialist and builders’ merchant Grafton is running a series of roadshows for investors over the next week. However, the group has dropped a proposal to issue a sterling bond.

The owner of Woodie’s DIY and Atlantic Homecare recently sent out a circular inviting investors to a series of roadshows that began in London on Thursday and continued in the Channel Islands yesterday.

The roadshows will take in various centres in England and Scotland next week before a meeting in Dublin on Friday.

The advance notice referring to the series of British and Irish roadshows states that a “sterling retail bond may follow, depending on market conditions”.

However, it is understood that the company has since decided not to issue the bond as market conditions are too volatile.

The Irish group hired London broker Evolution Securities to organise the roadshow, which is being primarily aimed at retail stockbrokers and wealth managers in Britain.

Grafton itself did not comment yesterday.

Around 70 per cent of Grafton’s revenues come from Britain, where it owns a range of builders’ merchants and heating and plumbing suppliers.

In Ireland, its businesses include both the DIY chains and the Heiton Buckley and Chadwick’s builders’ merchants businesses.

The group said this week that it expects its operations to generate between €52 million and €55 million in profits this year.

Analysts were expecting a figure of closer to €60 million.

It also reported that sales in the 10 months to the end of October were flat at €1.7 billion.

Source : Barry O’Halloran – Irish Times

12 November 2011
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