Raspberry Pi maker cuts dividend

Tough UK and US markets hit Premier Farnell
Tough UK and US markets hit Premier Farnell

​Electronics distributor Premier Farnell, the company behind the Raspberry Pi mini-computer,​ has slashed its final dividend for the full year to 3.6p per share as it expects difficult trading conditions to continue in North America and the UK.

The Leeds-based firm paid ​a ​10.4​p dividend in the previous year.

The company​ ​said ​US ​sales per day ​fell 6.9 per​ ​cent ​in the third quarter and by​ 5.1 per​ ​cent in the fourth quarter​.

The Americas accounted for nearly 35 per​ ​cent of the company's revenue for the financial year ​to January​ 31.

Full-year revenue rose to ​£​982.7​m from ​£​960.1​m a year ago.

Analyst ​Robin Speakman at Shore Capital said: ​"​The specialist electronics distributor has announced its final results calling time on a very difficult year for the company with few if any highlights, in our view.

​"Revenues were £1m above our forecast at £983m. Gross profit was on target at £338m​.

​"​EBITA was also in-line at £73m​ and adjusted pre-tax profit missed our target by £1m at £57m​.​

​"​The current year sees the impact of the sale of the Akron business, this is set to see earnings and margins come under further pressure, but with a clear balance sheet benefit. The Premier story is now focused upon remedial action on the operating margin, restructuring the company for better performance and a return to growth.

​"​We fear that material further restructuring charges will potentially be levied over the next two years.​"