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Strong growth for packaging group DS Smith

Packaging group DS Smith enjoyed an 80 per cent growth in pre-tax profits in its latest half year.


For the six month to the end of October they were up to £175 million on revenue that grew 16 per cent to £3.36 billion.

The group, which has a site in Smethwick and a recycling operation in Willenhall, saw record corrugated box volume sales growth of 9.4 per cent.

Miles Roberts, the group's chief executive, said: "We are continuing to benefit from a very dynamic market with demand for packaging for different retail solutions evolving rapidly and COP26 intensifying the desire for sustainable packaging solutions for the circular economy. Our leadership in these areas has contributed to record volumes with particularly strong growth in the US and Southern Europe regions, where we have invested recently, as well as with our multi-national fast moving consumer goods customers.

"In a challenging operating environment, I am pleased to see good progress. Our supply chains have remained secure and the significant increases in input costs have been mitigated by effective hedging of energy cost, our long term supplier agreements and raising packaging prices."

Mr Roberts said the business had been built to benefit from the significant structural growth drivers within fibre-based corrugated packaging.

"These benefits, combined with our scale, geographic footprint, sustainability and innovation focus, position us very well for continued volume and market share growth. Together with pricing momentum, this underpins our confidence to deliver a significant improvement in profitability during the second half of this year in line with our expectations and towards our medium-term targets," he added.

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