Irish natural resources company Coillte has amassed €35m in operating profit before exceptional items for 2012. The annual results also reveal the company paid a dividend of €2m to the State, and that Coillte Group’s turnover rose by €3m during 2012 to €262.2m, reflecting an increase of 1pc.
Coillte’s business areas include forestry management, land management, renewable energy, and manufacture and export of wood panel products.
Export sales account for 56pc of Coillte Group turnover and 65pc of this figure was sold into the UK market last year.
Coillte generates most of its revenue from the construction sector, which is still a challenging environment both domestically and overseas, said Gerry Britchfield, acting chief executive.
He said he is confident, however, that the company can face these challenges by seeking out new markets and increasing the range of products and services it offers.
“In 2012, as part of our transformation, we restructured our forest business, with a view to enhancing the commercial value of all stages of the forestry production cycle,” said Britchfield.
Coillte Panel Products had a turnover of €154m in 2012.
“In our panel products business, while prices were relatively stable, they were lower than anticipated and this remains a key issue for us in 2013,” Britchfield said.
“However, last year we exported to a record 32 countries and 90pc of turnover is now derived from export sales, as a result of a strategic plan to seek out new markets for our products.”
Britchfield also said the company has been driving innovation in this area.
“With this in mind, the board of Coillte approved plans to invest in our SmartPly facility in Waterford Port, subject to shareholder approval. This investment will protect the value of the Irish forest products sector as SmartPly is the primary pulpwood outlet on the island and will underpin 400 direct and indirect jobs in the south-east and provide a strong platform for further job creation,” Britchfield said.
Forestry image via Shutterstock