Cable & Wireless inches back into profit

Cable & Wireless Worldwide (CWW) has inched back into the black after posting a full-year net profit of £1m, up from a £32m loss this time last year. The UK-based communications provider scraped over the line thanks to a £95m income tax credit that just about absorbed a pr

Cable & Wireless Worldwide (CWW) has inched back into the black after posting a full-year net profit of £1m, up from a £32m loss this time last year.

The UK-based communications provider scraped over the line thanks to a £95m income tax credit that just about absorbed a pre-tax loss of £94m for the 12 months ended 31 March 2010.

The pre-tax loss came as CWW was hit with a litany of one-off charges, including £13m relating to its recent demerger, £23m relating to restructuring and redundancies and £143m relating to a deficit in the defined benefit element of its pension plan.

Total sales were flat at £2.26bn and operating cashflow rose £91m to £81m.

CEO Jim March praised a "strong" set of results, saying the firm made "real strategic progress."

"Not only did we deliver our cash and EBITDA guidance, but we also completed our demerger from Cable & Wireless plc. This is a very proud moment that has been years in the making," he said. "I see this as our coming of age, having spent four years on the turnaround of our business and we now have the opportunity to show the world our true capability and potential."

The demerger, completed earlier this year, saw Cable & Wireless split into two different firms, of which CWW takes overall responsibility for the UK business.

Across the UK business, the enterprise and public sector units saw sales grow slightly, while carrier revenues were predictably lacklustre as the recession drove down wholesale call volumes. The mid-market business, which includes THUS, grew sales by 14% and gross margins by 42%.

CWW claims to have taken out £87m of annualised costs from the integration of the THUS business, which it acquired towards the back end of calendar 2008.

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