Shares in Premier Farnell were up on the FTSE 250 in morning trading after the distribution group reported a strong rise in revenue and pre-tax profit in the full year ended 30 January.
Revenue grew 21 per cent from the previous year to £990.8 million, while pre-tax profit increased 74 per cent to £93.3 million. On an underlying basis pre-tax profit rose 70 per cent to £93.3 million.
Following the results Premier Farnell said it would be hiking its dividend 10.6 per cent to 10.4 pence per share.
The group said that the fourth quarter of the year had seen strong growth in emerging markets China, India and Eastern Europe.
Harriet Green, Chief Executive of Premier Farnell, said, "We have delivered the highest level in Group sales and operating profit for the fourth quarter for more than 10 years, with year on year growth of 13.9% and 31.6%, respectively, despite the tougher comparators. Sequentially sales grew 2.0% over the prior quarter which is counter seasonal for our business. Our focus on driving market share gains and the strength of our proven global strategy underpins this acceleration in our quarterly sales performance.
"This sales momentum from the fourth quarter has continued into the new financial year. The month of February saw the two highest day's sales ever recorded within our European business and for the Group sales grew 8.0% year on year. This level of growth is despite the weather disruption in the US that continued from January into February and after adjusting for the impact of the TPC Wire and Cable disposal. The extent of the disruption to the electronics supply chain caused by the recent environmental disasters in Japan is not yet fully understood. However, the Group's Japanese customer base and direct supply chain are very small, and it is clear that Premier Farnell's significant inventory and support to all its customers and suppliers will be invaluable at this time.
"The strength of the Group's performance in financial year 2011 together with this positive start to the new year, underpins the Board's decision to raise the proposed final dividend per share by 15.4%. Through driving further market share gains and the continued execution of our strategy the Group is well positioned to deliver sales growth in the new financial year that is in excess of our targeted level of sales growth."
By 10:25 shares in Premier Farnell were up 1.16 per cent on the FTSE 250 to 279.80 pence per share.