United Biscuits UK saw profits rise by 10.4% to £218.5m last year, on sales of £1.06bn only 1% up on the previous year.
The company, which makes Jaffa Cakes and McVitie’s biscuits, filed its latest accounts to the 12 months ended 1 January at Companies House, which showed that cost-cutting, such as a reduction in corporation tax, helped increase earnings. UBUK made a saving on salaries, as staff numbers dropped last year from 6,492 to 6,169; staff in manufacturing and production fell from 5,457 to 5,199. In February, it announced plans to cut about 85 jobs at its McVitie’s factory in Tollcross, Glasgow.
Revenue growth was driven by successful NPD, extensions to priority brands and pricing in the UK and overseas. Its branded biscuit sales accounted for 25.9% of the total biscuit market.
UBUK is 90% joint-owned by private equity firms Blackstone and PAI Partners, with the management owning the rest. Last year it was in talks with a Chinese food firm, although the sale reportedly fell through.