Warhammer Games Worksop announces big boost in trading update

Games Workshop has raised its dividend for shareholders as reported trading was on track with targets for the past three months. The Warhammer retailer and supplier saw shares jump on Thursday morning (March 24) as a result.

The Nottingham-based company told investors that trading over the quarter to the end of February “has been in line with expectations”. In its previous trading update, Games Workshop revealed total revenues increased by 2.5% to £191.5 million for the six-month period to November, following the easing of pandemic restrictions.

However, the business, headquartered in Lenton, reported that pre-tax profits fell by 3.7% to £88.2 million for the half-year as higher costs offset growth. In January, it also highlighted £2 million in extra shipping and freight costs during the period due to Brexit, as well as a £2.9 million increase in warehouse and logistics costs over the year.

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On Thursday, Games Workshop also declared a dividend of 70p per share, which will be paid to shareholders in May. Total dividends declared over the year so far, including the new payment, have risen to £2.35 per share from £1.85 a year ago, the fantasy games business said.

Peel Hunt analyst Charles Hall said the payment is “well ahead” of dividend forecasts of £2.15 per share. “The company returns ‘truly surplus cash’ to shareholders so, unlike most companies, dividends are a true reflection of cash flow, which is largely driven by profit performance,” Mr Hall said.

“The company has also stated that it is trading in line with expectations, which confirms it is on target to deliver a strong second half performance.” Shares in the firm climbed by 6.4% to 7,576.7p in early trading.