Marshalls aiming for Olympic gold

PAVING specialist Marshalls reported increasing demand ahead of the 2012 London Olympics and estimates it could win between £8m and £10m in new orders for the Games.

This figure would include paving, landscaping, drainage and other niche products such as security bollards.

The Huddersfield-based company said in a trading update that it is cautious about the short term outlook, but encouraged by the positive impact of increasing Olympic demand.

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Chief executive Graham Holden added that the group is also benefiting from the start-up of several previously delayed commercial contracts.

Marshalls said its headline revenue for the four months to April 30 came in flat at 103m, in line with expectations despite the adverse impact on outdoor working conditions caused by the snow in January.

"Following the snow in the first two weeks of January sales were well down – by a few million pounds," said Mr Holden.

"But when the weather picked up we made some of it back. We can claw it back once we get longer days and over the year I would hope to get most of it back."

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Like-for-like sales were similar to last year as were the proportions of sales to the public sector and commercial and domestic end markets.

The survey of domestic installers at the end of April 2010 revealed order books of 8.4 weeks, up from 6.8 weeks at the end of February 2010.

Following the annual general meeting later today, Mike Davies and Richard Scholes will step down and two new independent non-executive directors, Alan Coppin and Mark Edwards, will join the board.

Mr Coppin is a non-executive director of Berkeley Group and Capital and Regional, and was previously chairman of Redstone.

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Mr Edwards is a chartered accountant with extensive experience in the manufacturing sector, most recently as chief executive of Baxi Group.

Andrew Allner, who has been a board member since July 2003, will become chairman of Marshalls.

Established in the late 1880s, Marshalls is the UK's leading

manufacturer of superior natural stone and concrete hard

landscaping products, supplying the construction, home improvement and landscape markets.