Date: Thursday 15 Apr 2010
LONDON (ShareCast) - Amiad, a supplier of water filters and filtration systems, reported a 30% jump in full-year profit and said it is well-positioned to deliver shareholder value in the mid to long term.
Pre-tax profit rose to $8.7m in the year ended 31 December compared with $6.7m last time, even though revenue fell to $69.1m from $73.3m previously.
Brick sales slumped at Michelmersh Brick in 2009 but it still managed to generate a higher gross profit. Lower gas costs helped but it was a change in mix of sales that really boosted gross margins. While revenues fell from £24.2m to £17.9m, gross profits rose from £3.92m to £4.62m. Those higher gross profits, the lack of a large bad debt and other lower costs meant that the overall loss was reduced from £2.87m to £996,000.
Brick sales fell from 79m in 2008 to 50m in 2009. Average selling prices, though, increased from £305 per thousand bricks to £350 per thousand.
"We must continue to be cautious in the current economic situation particularly with the General Election before us; demand however is picking up across each of our works and I am therefore more optimistic than in recent statements," said chairman Eric Gadsden.
William Sinclair said it has seen positive trading in the period contrary to industry reports of weak consumer sales. In particular, like-for-like sales of peat free compost sold under the New Horizon brand increased by 44% compared with the same period last year.
The group also confirmed it has now received £9m from DEFRA as an advance initial payment for the future cessation of peat harvesting at Bolton Fell Moss in Cumbria
Shares in Lombard Medical Technologies got a lift from news of a presentation about the company’s endovascular stent graft, Aorfix, by Dr. John Hardman to the 32nd International Charing Cross Symposium.
Reporting on a study of Aorfix’s effect on the rate of iliac limb occlusion, Dr. Hardman said “In our experience, having Aorfix available allows us to treat more patients with an endovascular approach. Furthermore, we have seen a dramatic improvement in our iliac limb occlusion rates when utilizing the Aorfix stent graft."
Marketing group Mission Marketing slipped into the red in 2009 after taking a £4m non-cash impairment charge.
The company returned a loss before tax of £0.87m in 2009 after making a profit of £7.25m the year before, Turnover tumbled 17% to £85.98m from £104.16m in a year in which the industry as a whole saw revenue ease 15%.
Mission Marketing is now focusing on organic growth and reshaping the group so as to minimise overheads and reduce debt.
Chief executive officer Ian Ferguson will probably not be around to oversee that restructuring as he has announced his intention to give up the role “at the appropriate time” to pursue other interests.
Jupiter European Opportunities Trust saw its net asset value per share (excluding income and expenses) rise by 8.6% to 228.68p in the period from 1 December 2009 to 28 February 2010.
Over the same period the FTSE World Europe (excluding UK) Total Return index, the benchmark against which the trust’s performance is measured, declined 0.65.
The company attributed its outperformance to its stock picking and its exposure to the healthcare sector.
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