SWALLOWFIELD, the Wellington-based cosmetics and toiletries company, has just announced an increase in profits for the third year running.

The company has bucked the economic downturn in the manufacturing sector and announced preliminary results ahead of market expectations for the year ending June 30.

Latest figures show pre-tax profits of £1.32m (up 42 per cent on £0.93m in 2007), with net debt reduced by more than half (from £4.88m in 2007 to £2.42m). The company has recommended a final dividend of 4.1p per share, making 5.5p for the full year, and a considerable increase on the 1.3p per share declared last year.

Chief Executive Ian Mackinnon said: “The results demonstrate the success of our strategic transformation from a contract manufacturer to a real full service provider; as well as the impact of our wider geographic footprint, particularly in the Czech Republic.”

Non-executive chairman, Shena Winning, added: “Over the last 2½ years under Ian Mackinnon’s leadership, Swallowfield has transformed itself from a contract manufacturer to a service provider working closely with customers to deliver products which will make them leaders in their marketplace.

“This is now beginning to reap dividends and we expect this to begin to be translated into organic sales growth in the coming year.”

Swallowfield is aiming to grow its international business through the joint venture agreement it recently signed with Jahwa, IE, a subsidiary of one of China’s largest players in the toiletries sector, and Kasho, a Japanese investment company.

Swallowfield will also open a new sales office in Paris by the end of the year.