Pinewood Shepperton studios

Pinewood announces loss in exceptional year

Peel Group, the majority shareholder of Pinewood Shepperton, remains determined to redevelop the film studio complex despite rejection of a planning application at a public inquiry.

Announcing its unaudited results for the 12 months to 31 December – unaudited because it is changing to a 31 March year-end – Pinewood produced strong operating profits of £10.3m on turnover of £50.7m up 17% on 2010.

However, after one-off costs the group showed a pre-tax loss of £5.4m compared to a 2010 profit of £4.3m.

The exceptional costs included £7.1m on the Project Pinewood planning application, refused by communities secretary Eric Pickles at the start of this year. The plan was for 1,400 homes in the style of famous locations that would double as film sets to be built at the company's base in Buckinghamshire. Local residents objected to the plans.

There was also a cost of £3.3m attributed to the takeover by Peel in July 2011. Peel now owns 71.1%. Stockport jeweller Warren James owns 27.9%.

Ivan Dunleavy, chief executive of Pinewood, said: "The company has delivered a strong performance for the full year with overall revenues significantly up. Our strategy has delivered robust growth. The on-going demand from big budget films and large scale television shows for our unique facilities remains resilient. Our international strategy continues to deliver growth and further opportunity to extend the Pinewood brand overseas. Against these record results the company is well positioned to develop its activities.

"The company believes that Pinewood forms a vital part in driving growth in the UK's well-established and world-leading creative industry and consequently is disappointed that the planning inquiry did not result in a successful outcome for Project Pinewood. The board supported by its major shareholder are determined to work with government and stakeholders to deliver the long-term vision for Pinewood that it needs if it is to remain a global centre for the film and creative industries. We will therefore continue to engage to ensure that the site meets the needs for growth over the next 20-30 years."

The company's banking facilities were amended following the acquisition by Peel. Pinewood now has a bank facility of £52m, comprising a £40.5m revolving credit facility, a £6.5m pre-let development facility and a £5m overdraft facility, all secured by a floating charge over the group's assets.

No mention was made of establishing a northern base for Pinewood at Media City UK in Salford and Trafford, which has been widely predicted by Peel watchers.

Shares in Pinewood were up 2p to 240p by mid-morning on Wednesday.

Your Comments

Subscribe to our newsletter