The Coats Group Board is mindful of the importance of income to shareholders and, as a result of the strength of the Group's balance sheet, the continued encouraging recovery out of the Covid pandemic, and its confidence in the strategy and outlook for the Group, it is pleased to declare an ordinary interim dividend of 0.61 cents per share (2020 interim dividend: nil). The interim dividend will be paid on 16 November 2021 to ordinary shareholders on the register at 22 October 2021, with an ex-dividend date of 21 October 2021. The proposed full year dividend will be announced in March 2022 alongside the Full Year 2021 results.
Other financial highlights include:
Continued positive momentum during the first half; organic revenues up 1% vs 2019 and 34% vs 2020, despite recent lockdown impacts in India in May and June which have now ended
Encouraging momentum and recovery in Apparel and Footwear: core thread business up 2% vs 2019 (41% vs 2020); positive end market sentiment across US, Europe and Asia; sports and athleisure perform well due to ongoing casualisation trend
Performance Materials organic growth of 4% vs 2019 (19% vs 2020), with all segments performing strongly apart from Personal Protection which continues to be impacted by US labour availability issues
Adjusted operating profit of $95 million; inflationary pressures offset by pricing actions and self-help productivity programmes
Adjusted EPS of 3.1c per share: significantly up from 2020 (0.0c) due to the recovery of operating profits towards pre-Covid levels, lower finance charges, and a normalisation of the effective tax rate
Strong cash generation in the period; net debt (excl. IFRS 16) of $168 million and strong adjusted free cash flow of $48 million; 0.8x leverage4 reflecting our commitment to financial discipline
As stated in a post-close trading update on 14 July, full year 2021 performance is anticipated to be moderately ahead of the Group's previous expectations.