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Stobart Group maintains dividend

Stobart's strategy is to use disposals from its Infrastructure and Investment divisions to support the dividend to 2022, at which point the dividend will be supported through income from its growing operating divisions
Steps for boarding an aeroplane
Stobart operated flights on behalf of its partners, Aer Lingus and FlyBe, carrying 1.7mln passengers

Stobart Group Ltd (LON:STOB), the infrastructure and support services business, edged higher on Thursday after a solid pre-close period trading statement.

The shares rose 3p to 231p after the group confirmed its quarterly dividend would be maintained at 4.5p a share and gave a quick run-down of how its businesses performed in the financial year just ended.

The group intends to invest heavily in its aviation business

The operator of London Southend Airport saw more than a million passengers pass through its doors in 2017, representing a 25% year-on-year increase.

The group has earmarked up to £40mln to be invested in awareness, route development, branding, marketing and airline incentive deals at London Southend Airport before end-February 2021, of which around £10mln was invested in fiscal 2018.

READ: Stobart Group responds to Flybe bid speculation

Meanwhile, Carlisle Lake District Airport is on course to open for passengers for the first time this summer.

Stobart Air continued to make good progress, Stobart said, operating flights on behalf of its partners, Aer Lingus and FlyBe, carrying 1.7mln passengers.

Stobart Energy successfully proves its business model

The company’s energy division was delivering renewable energy in the first two months of 2018 at a run rate of around 1.3mln tonnes a year, and has successfully proven its business model, Stobart said.

Stobart Energy has closely managed its costs and the underlying earnings (Ebitda) margin per tonne is ahead of target, with a defined plan for delivering targets for 2022 now in place.

"Stobart Group has made good progress during the last year. We continue to see growth in our aviation division, with a 25% increase in passengers at London Southend Airport, 10% increase in passenger numbers flying via Stobart Air, and we are excited to be welcoming passengers at Carlisle Lake District Airport from summer of this year,” said Warwick Brady, the chief executive officer of Stobart Group.

“We continue to realise value from our infrastructure and investment divisions and these disposals are expected to support the dividend up until 2022, when we expect our operating divisions to meet their targets for Ebitda contribution," he added.

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