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James Cropper Plc - AGM Statement and Trading Update

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James Cropper PLC ("James Cropper", "Group" or the "Company")

AGM Statement and Trading Update

Annual General Meeting

James Cropper plc is holding its 2020 Annual General Meeting (AGM) at 11.00am today, in accordance with its articles of association and in compliance with the UK Government's social distancing guidelines. As such, as previously instructed, shareholders should not attend the meeting in person.

AGM Statement and Trading Update

In line with management expectations the Group has experienced a sharp downturn in activity in the first quarter of this year, resulting in a trading loss.

The impact of the global pandemic is now being felt throughout the Group. The Group continues to focus on the health and well?being of our employees globally, supporting our customers and managing cash resources. Group sales for the first quarter are down on the prior year quarter but in line with expectations. Both TFP and Colourform are showing growth in sales with the Paper division being hit the hardest by the impact of the pandemic.

Over the last 175 years, James Cropper has proved resilient in the face of numerous challenges owing to its willingness to invest for the long term combined with the ability to rapidly respond to changes in markets and technologies.

The Company has been developing restructuring plans for some time in order to drive growth and competitiveness. The impact of the pandemic has required us to accelerate the implementation of these plans, which affect our Paper and Group operations divisions. Overall less than 10% of our employees will be potentially affected. We will work collaboratively with our employees, unions and representatives to establish how best to achieve these changes and minimise potential job losses.

Our focus remains on protecting the long-term future of the Group and emerge from the pandemic as a stronger organisation.

Overall, the outlook for the Group remains in line with management expectations. TFP is not expected to be impacted significantly by the pandemic, with year-on-year growth expected in a number of sectors including fuel cell and wind helping to offset the decline in aerospace demand. Colourform still expects sales to grow year-on-year, while Paper will be focusing on structural reorganisation to support accelerated growth and increased competitiveness.

I am satisfied that the changes we are making are necessary for the Group's long-term success. For the current year I am confident the Group will perform in line with the Board's expectations and we will deliver a stronger organisation for the years to come.