Quinn group has maintained its forecast of making cash profits of between €400m and €500m in 2009, despite experiencing a challenging first quarter.
The Derrylin-based company, owned by billionaire businessman Sean Quinn, said in a trading statement on its website that it was hopeful of meeting the profit guidance it gave in January.
“The first quarter of 2009 has certainly been a challenging period for the world economy and Ireland in particular,” the company said.
“Although trading levels are down overall, the Quinn Group continues to enjoy superior margins to its competitors. We have |resisted the temptation to reduce prices to below economically sustainable levels and consequently while trading is reduced we |remain comfortable that as outlined in January the group will generate cash profits in 2009 of between €400m and €500m,” the update said.
Mr Quinn was ranked as Ireland’s richest man in the 2008 Sunday Times rich list.
However, the Co Fermanagh company he runs last year posted a €425m loss for 2007 after writing down the value of its investment in the now nationalised Anglo Irish Bank, in which the Quinn family owned a 15% stake.
The Quinn Group’s businesses operate across a variety of sectors including cement, plastics, hotels and insurance.
“Sales of cement and related products have reduced by 40% for the first quarter while sales of insulation products, glass and packaging products bolstered by continuing higher than expected exports, have exceeded budget,” the trading update said.
The firm said its healthcare |insurance division had reached the 500,000 customer mark earlier this this month. It also said it had launched its own YouTube site.