IFR Capital PLC - Acquisition & Trading Update
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RNS Number:8436M IFR Capital PLC 30 January 2008 IFR Capital Plc (AIM: IFR) 30 January 2008 IFR announces closing of Hamker acquisition and announces a preliminary trading update for 2007 Hamker acquisition IFR Capital Plc ("IFR" or the "Company": IFR.LN), an AIM-listed investment company focused on consolidation opportunities in the European retail food sector, today announces the closing of the Hamker acquisition following the receipt of the relevant merger clearance last week and the satisfaction of all outstanding conditions. IFR now owns 100% of the German operations of Hamker Lebensmittel Beteiligungs GmbH & Co. KG ("Hamker"). Hamker is the third acquisition by IFR following its purchases of Nordsee GmbH ("Nordsee") and Homann Chilled Food GmbH ("Homann"), and represents a significant step towards its vision of creating a diversified European food enterprise. Heiner Kamps, CEO of IFR states: "We are very satisfied with this enlargement of our portfolio and see mutual benefits for Homann and Hamker." Homann and Hamker management will now immediately start the process of realising the synergies which are mainly expected to be derived from the areas of complimentary strengths in product ranges and distribution channels, cost savings in production, overhead and logistics, and joint procurement through the increased sourcing volume. The acquisition of Hamker is closely aligned with IFR's long-term objective of creating a leading, vertically-integrated food business with a view to acquiring potentially synergistic businesses to drive IFR's further growth. Trading update IFR management is also pleased to announce an update on trading, including preliminary and unaudited figures for the financial year ended 31 December 2007 (the "Period"). The Company expects to be able to announce its audited final results for the financial year ended 31 December 2007, by the end of March 2008. Both sales and EBITDA were in line with management's expectations, with sales for the Period of € 481 m (€ 351 m in 2006) and EBITDA of € 40.2 m (€ 25.8 m in 2006). These results include only 6 months of the Homann business, since its acquisition in July 2007. The Nordsee business saw considerable growth, with an increase in EBITDA of more than 17.0% year on year, accounting for € 30.2 m in 2007 (2006: € 25.8 m). The Homann business generated an EBITDA of € 13.2 m within the last 6 months, ahead of expectations. Heiner Kamps explains: "Regarding Homann we have implemented the first steps which are already showing positive results. For 2008 we expect our measures to yield an even larger crop. As to Nordsee we have not only managed the turnaround but made it sustainable. In spite of the challenging situation on the raw material market I am very positive of our overall achievements." IFR expects to generate a turnover of about €800 million in 2008, and the Board reiterates its target of a sales volume of at least €1.5 billion with an EBITDA margin of approximately 10% by the end of 2009. Enquiries: Chris Wells, Stewart Wallace, Collins Stewart Europe Limited (Nominated Advisor to the Company) +44 (0) 20 7523 8350 Rob Bailhache, Financial Dynamics Limited +44 (0) 20 7269 7200 (Media Relations) Notes to Editors: IFR Capital IFR Capital plc (IFR) is an acquisition platform targeting small and medium-sized businesses in the continental European food industry, within three sub-sectors: retail (mainly shops/ restaurants), industry (wholesale and production) and distribution. IFR is currently considering various opportunities in the European food sector with a view to acquiring potentially synergistic businesses that would help propagate the company's further growth. Further opportunities include the ongoing expansion of IFR's new premium bakery brand, Bastians, to major European cities. Further details of these opportunities will be announced as they become available. Ultimately, IFR's intended long-term strategy is to create a leading, vertically-integrated food business with a turnover of at least €1.5 billion by 2009 and an EBITDA margin of approximately 10 per cent. Heiner Kamps Heiner Kamps, the highly regarded retail entrepreneur, is responsible for operational management of IFR Capital. Mr Kamps has extensive knowledge of the retail business across Europe and is the trustee of the humanitarian Heiner Kamps Foundation, "Bread against Misery" founded in 2000. This information is provided by RNS The company news service from the London Stock Exchange END ACQSDUFSSSASESF