De La Rue bags another tax stamp contract in Middle East

De La Rue has signed a contract with the Oman Tax Authority to introduce a digital tax stamp system for excisable goods, including tobacco products.

The five-year contract will see De La Rue set up a tax stamp scheme that will comply with the World Health Organisation's Framework Convention for Tobacco Control (FCTC) and product marking and serialisation for other excisable goods.

The system will combine secure printed tax stamps with digital tracking and will enable Oman to tighten control over suppliers' commitment to pay excise tax and to monitor the production and import processes of excisable goods.

This contract is the latest in a series of long-term contract wins for De La Rue's authentication division, and according to the company will start to contribute to revenue starting early in fiscal 2022-23.

It's a timely boost for the company, which has been hit by pandemic-related disruption mid-way a turnaround implemented by chief executive Clive Vacher in February 2020, setting its timeline back 12 months.

Last month, it cut its full-year profit forecast to £36m-£40m range ($48m-$54m), against earlier expectations of around £45m-£47m.

Andrew Clint, manging director of De La Rue's authentication business, said the Oman agreement means that all of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries that are putting tax stamp systems in place to date have selected De La Rue as their partner. 

"De La Rue now secures more than 14 billion products annually across our government revenue solutions (GRS) and brand protection solutions ensuring that we are protecting revenues and reputations for customers all around the world," he added.

Sales of De La Rue's authentication products – physical and digital technologies used to authenticate products through the supply chain and protect them from counterfeiting – grew 28 per cent in the first half to just over £44m and are set to reach £100m for the full-year.

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