Smart Metering Systems returns furlough money to UK Government

Smart Metering Systems returns furlough money to UK Government

Smart Metering Systems (SMS), the Glasgow-based energy tech firm, is returning its furlough cash received from the UK Government.

The company had suspended its smart meter installation activities on 22 March 2020 as a result of the developing coronavirus situation. Due to significant uncertainties at that time and the material impact of the cessation of activities on the utilisation of a large number of the Group’s workforce, SMS chose to furlough some of its staff and apply for a grant under the CJRS.

Over this period, SMS continued to supplement the amounts received to ensure furloughed staff received 100% of their salary.

On June 1, the firm resumed its non-essential activities, including installation of smart meters and has emerged from the recent uncertainties with a strong financial position.

The Group’s net cash position of £48m (excluding the grant) at 31 May 2020 is ahead of previous expectations and SMS continues to forecast underlying profitability for the year to 31 December 2020 to be in line with the Board’s earlier expectations.

SMS has therefore taken the decision to return the funds received from the UK Government under the CJRS and has also withdrawn from the furlough scheme.

Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, the firm insisted that it would maintain its dividend, which would take shareholders’ total payout for the financial year to 6.88p a share - a rise of 15%.

SMS said: “The dividends are well covered by existing long-term and recurring cash flow generation.”

  • Read all of our articles relating to COVID-19 here.
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