Packaging firm DS Smith reported record growth in the second half of its financial year, with the company benefitting from a pandemic-driven boom in online shopping that helped offset the initial impact of COVID-19 lockdowns.
DS Smith, which supplies packaging products to companies including Amazon, Nestlé, and Unilever , said its second-half adjusted operating profit came in at £272 million (€317.4 million), compared with £230 million (€268.4 million) in the first half, driven by strong demand for packaging material, particularly in the United States.
E-Commerce And Sustainability
"The growth drivers of e-commerce, sustainability and plastic-free packaging have accelerated over the last twelve months and we are very well placed to capitalise on this growth," commented Miles Roberts, group chief executive.
"We have worked hard over many years to focus our business purely on fibre-based packaging and this differentiation is clearly recognised by our customers.”
The packaging giant has also spiked its investments to set up box plants in Italy and Poland that cater to making materials for e-commerce packaging.
The company said statutory profit before tax fell 38% to £231 million for the full year ended April 30, compared with £368 million a year earlier as the pandemic impacted its operations initially.
Full-year revenue fell to £5.98 billion (€6.98 billion), from £6.04 billion pounds a year ago.
DS Smith also announced a final dividend of 8.1 pence, taking its total dividend for the year to 12.1 pence.
Also in its results announcement, Roberts paid tribute to the company's personnel, saying, “Above all else I would like to recognise the extraordinary commitment of all our 29,000 colleagues over the last 12 months. Our teams in over 300 sites have gone above and beyond what is required to keep delivering for our customers, supporting all our communities and, most of all, taking care of each other."