Acal puts positive spin on weak interims

Electronics company Acal has delivered weak interims although it does expect sales growth in the second half and has maintained its interim dividend of 2.5p per share.

Electronics company Acal has delivered weak interims although it does expect sales growth in the second half and has maintained its interim dividend of 2.5p per share.

For the six months ended September 30th, revenues fell by 17.9% to £109.8m (September 30th 2011: £133.7m) with pre-tax profits plummeting 63% to £0.7m (2011: £1.9m).

The company attempted to put a brave face on the revenue figures, saying that the European market declined by 15% and pointing out that at constant exchange rates its fall in revenues was 8%.

Reduced profits were affected by 'exceptionals' for the period that totalled £1.6m, of which £0.9m was from its cost reduction programme and £0.7m from the development of a new electronics web platform. Further exceptional costs expected in the second half are £1.2m, being £0.4m for the remainder of the cost reduction programme, £0.6m for the completion of the web platform development and £0.2m for the integration of Compotron into Acal BFI.

Chief Executive Nick Jefferies, commented: "The business has outperformed its core electronics market with growth in orders throughout the first half. The half-year results are in line with our expectations and reflect the growing market share which has minimised sales decline in difficult market conditions. This in turn has been partially offset by a further increase in gross margin as well as a 10% cost reduction programme implemented last year."

The interim dividend of 2.5p is being maintained and will be paid on January 18th to shareholders on the register at December 28th.

CM

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