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Equipment firm HSS Hire issue a warning over results

By John-Paul Ford Rojas

Tool and equipment firm HSS Hire blamed "slower than expected" housing and home improvement markets as it warned full-year results would fall short of expectations.

Shares plunged by as much as 36% after HSS said demand in recent weeks had been "more variable" than expected at this time of year and it now saw revenue and earnings for 2015 coming in below market forecasts.

The group, which floated on the stock market in February, made the warning as it reported a widened pre-tax loss of £14.1m for the first half to June 27.

HSS said earnings were weighed down by investment in its fleet and the £3m cost of the share float. Chief executive Chris Davies said results were in line with its trading update in June, with revenues up 12% to £146.4m and further gains in market share.

He said: "As others have reported, trading continues to be unpredictable, and after a reasonable July, we have seen softer market conditions in August."

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