Solid growth despite slow growth economy and deflation
On September 27, 2016, Ferguson’s parent company Wolseley plc, the world’s largest specialty trade distributor of plumbing and heating products, announced its financial results for the 2016 fiscal year.
Ferguson ended the year with sales of $13.8 billion, an increase of 6 percent over last year despite a slow growth economy and 2.2 percent commodity deflation. Trading profits were ahead 6.3 percent ahead of last year.
The company grew 4.1 percent on a like-for-like basis, which measures growth of Ferguson’s existing stores or branches that have been open for at least one year. Ferguson closed on 13 acquisitions this fiscal year. The acquisitions spanned coast-to-coast and multiple business types including waterworks, plumbing, fire and fabrication and MRO, in addition to eCommerce companies and appliance and lighting showrooms.
“Our business continues to outperform the market which is a testament to the priority our talented associates place on providing the best possible service experience for our customers,” said Ferguson CEO Frank Roach. “A slow growth economy does not deter us from taking care of our customers, growing market share and driving continuous improvement.”
Ferguson’s blended branches (locations that serve a mix of residential and commercial customers), Waterworks, HVAC and Fire and Fabrication all generated good growth and gained market share. B2B and B2C online sales accounted for 19% of Ferguson’s revenue. The company continues to invest substantially in online platforms to meet the needs of its ever-changing customer.
In addition to Ferguson, Wolseley operates in the United Kingdom, the Nordics, Canada and Central Europe. Ferguson currently makes up 81 percent of Wolseley’s trading profit, up from 76 percent in fiscal year 2015.