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Xaar ups expectations after strong first quarter

Ink-jet printing specialist Xaar enjoyed significant year-on-year sales growth in the first three months of 2013 and guided towards increased expectations for the full year.

Ink-jet printing specialist Xaar enjoyed significant year-on-year sales growth in the first three months of 2013 and guided towards increased expectations for the full year.

The company saw the strong rise in revenues from both its industrial and packaging markets, supported by modest recovery of growth in the graphic arts market, which had fallen in the last full year.

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Operating margins in the first quarter benefited from the growth in sales but are expected to soften later in the year as the company ups its spending on expanding manufacturing capacity at its Huntingdon plant and increased R&D spending.

The Cambridge-based group reported that net cash had grown from £28.9m at calendar year end to £41.7m at March 31st mostly due most of the year's capital expenditure coming in the second half of the year and a reduction in net working capital.

The board stated that it remained confident that strong growth in revenue and profit will be achieved in 2013 versus 2012 and in the trading statement wrote: "The trading performance in the first quarter, combined with the strength of the forecast for the remainder of 2013, have increased the board's expectations for the year."

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