Change of fortunes

Castle View back in profit after turbulent year

SLM operates around 200 leisure facilities

Sports centre management and food production company Castle View Corporate Holdings has swung back into profit following a loss caused by the pandemic closures.

The Bridge of Allan business posted a £14.75m pre-tax profit in the 12 months to March this year against a £12.05 million loss in the previous year when many of the facilities at its main subsidiary, Sports and Leisure Management Group (SLM), were closed for long periods.

It was also a sharp increase on the £5.3m profit in the financial year to March 2020, the 12 months period before the lockdown.

Turnover for the latest period was £246.29m against £107.58m in 2021, though lower than the £261m reported in 2020.

Martin Bell, group managing director at CVCH, said: “Membership, usage and revenue levels are currently running around pre Covid levels, which we consider very encouraging and a reflection of the efforts made by our team. 

“The forthcoming year will bring new challenges as energy prices and the wider supply chain pose a significant cost to the business. However, the directors are confident that by ensuring expenditure is tightly controlled the company will continue to trade successfully for the foreseeable future.”

On 31 March 2022 SLM operated around 200 leisure facilities throughout England and Wales, with nine sites opened during the year. The business closed five sites in Plymouth during the period.

At another CVCH subsidiary, Cambuslang-based UIN Foods, trading saw further reduction in sales volume as the market recovered from the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. There was an operating loss of £412,977. 

Mr Bell said: “The board is optimistic that trading will reach breakeven in the coming year.”

He added: “Overall, as a group, we believe we are in good shape to face the future. Our balance sheet is strong – net assets are up from £15.06m to £26.07m – and, at SLM, we are seeing record numbers of membership and swimming lessons.

“There are lots of potential threats in the current business environment which may or may not materialise, including cost pressures on staff remuneration, our principal expenditure, and on energy costs.

“We hope and trust that the worst is behind us and are cautiously optimistic of the outcomes for both this current year and next.”

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