Chicken firm serves up tasty profits
Moy Park is headquartered in Craigavon, but is a large organisation with activities throughout the UK and Ireland, with a subsidiary in France. The main activities of this Northern Ireland-controlled group are in locally farmed poultry. The group also produces and sells a range of complementary convenience food products and brands.
Moy Park is itself a wholly-owned subsidiary of a large Brazilian company, Marfrig. Marfrig has an even wider range of commercial interests in meat and meat products and appears to have an interest in supplying some of these products from Brazil to western Europe.
Moy Park in 2011 is barely recognisable as the successful, locally-managed company which established a successful business in the previous decades. With an average of over 8,500 employees in 2010, it is one of the largest locally-controlled private sector employers. The most recent expansion of Moy Park came with the purchase in August 2010 of O'Kane Poultry. As well as expanding the rearing and processing of chicken, the purchase of O'Kane added milling capacity to the group and additionally added turkey processing to the product range.
With the consolidation of O'Kane Poultry into Moy Park, this means that the company is the biggest poultry sector complex in Northern Ireland.
Turnover in the group rose by 18% in 2010. However, this generated a further recovery in operating and pre-tax profits. After a sequence of losses recorded in 2007 and 2008, the group returned to profitability in 2009 and this performance improved further in 2010.
Operating profit in 2010 was 3.4% of turnover. Pre-tax profit in 2010, at £28m, represented a return of nearly 20% on the balance sheet value of shareholders funds.