StockMarketWire.com - Pennon has reported a 1.2% increase in its underlying revenue for the 2020/21 period, but suffered a 14.2% pre-tax loss when compared with the year prior as the group repositions itself in the market.

In July 2020, the company saw £3.7 billion in net cash proceeds from the sale of Viridor, resulting in a £1.7 billion on disposal.

Today the company has announced its acquisition of Bristol Water for an equity value of £425 million, and an enterprise value of £814 million, including assumed debt.

The company also made a debt repayment of £1.1 billion and made over £50 million in additional pension contributions bring the fund into a small surplus position.

According to the results, Pennon has retained £0.1 billion of cash at group level to maintain flexibility for future growth opportunities.

Approximately £1.5 billion of capitals been returned to shareholders via a special dividend of £3.55 per share, with consolidation.

Dividend base in 2021/22 is expected to increase by 2.00p (c.9%) recognising the earnings accretive nature of the Bristol Water acquisition.

Susan Davy, group chief executive at Pennon, said: 'We have demonstrated our credentials as a responsible business, reducing debt levels, increasing pension contributions, and further supporting the Green Recovery for the much-needed regeneration of our region.

'Pennon is also proposing an on-market share buy-back programme of up to £0.4 billion expected to be conducted through to September 2022, noting that this may be reconsidered if other attractive growth opportunities are identified. We are also pleased to be recognising shareholder support through the return of c.£1.5 billion to shareholders in the form of a special dividend.'

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