Retail transfer gain leaves pre tax earnings down 8% at SES Water as costs rise

Profit before tax at SES Water was down 8% for the year to 30 March 2019 to £9.7m after a one-off £2m profit from the sale of its business retail operation to an associated concern in the previous year offset a £1.1m fall in financial expenses in the current report.

While operating costs increased for the year £3.3m to £48.4m – including a £1m rise in wages to £10.6m and pension costs up £0.7m – a 2.7% revenue rise to £66.8m and other income of £1.6m, including a £1.25m insurance claim, took operating profit up 1% to £20.1m.

A de leveraging exercise during the financial year 2018-19 reduced the company’s gearing from 77% to 61%. It included the conversion of £12.4m-worth of preference shares to ordinary shares and paying back a £30m loan.