KIDDERMINSTER carpets and flooring group Victoria Plc is to expand its international business after agreeing to pay 34 million Australian dollars (£20 mill.) to buy Dunlop Flooring.

Dunlop operates from sites in Sydney and Melbourne and makes and distributes flooring underlay, branded wood and vinyl flooring products across Australia.

The company — which generated EBIT of 4.9 million dollars (£2.9 mill.) on revenues of 50.8 million dollars (£30 mill.) in the year to end June — is being sold by Pacific Brands Limited, itself recently bought by HanesBrands Inc. in the U.S.

The deal will be funded from Victoria’s cash and existing debt facilities with the acquisition to be immediately and significantly earnings accretive on completion, the company said in a press statement.

Chairman Geoff Wilding said: “Dunlop is another important and strategic acquisition for us, and one which reinforces our strategy of targeting earnings-enhancing acquisitions in addition to organic growth. It will make a positive contribution to Victoria's profits whilst diversifying our market exposure. Post-completion, nearly 30 percent of Victoria's earnings will come from Australia — a dynamic and growing market and a strong economy.

“Shareholders will recall that Victoria acquired UK underlay manufacturer, Interfloor, in September 2015 and we have been highly effective in improving earnings over the last 12 months. We anticipate a similar outcome with Dunlop.”

It is Victoria’s second major Australian acquisition, following its deal to buy Quest Carpets 16 months ago. The enlarged Victoria group now has approximately 1,800 employees and operates from ten sites in the UK, and five in Australia.

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