- Cleaning product group McBride said its first-half profit more than doubled as demand remained strong amid the pandemic, though it held back on paying a dividend.

Pre-tax profit for the six months through December jumped to £13.3 million, up from £6.3 million year-on-year, as revenue rose 1.7% to £362.9 million.

McBride said that following 'panic buying' during the first wave of the pandemic, its inventory levels became heavily reduced, putting pressure on customer service levels in the months that followed.

'The company's consumer end markets continue to be both buffeted and enhanced in different ways by the Covid-19 environment making demand levels more variable than usual,' chief executive Chris Smith said.

'As anticipated, we have seen input costs start to tick up but overall the board's expectations for the full year remain in line with our December trading update.'

McBride said it wouldn't pay an interim dividend, citing a strategy reset.

'The group has been operating under its new divisional structure since the beginning of 2021 and I can already start to see beneficial effects of the new management teams leading their businesses,' Smith said.

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