Provider of sterilisation services, Synergy Health, saw both revenue and profit rise for the six months ended 2 October, but shares fell lower on Thursday after the firm gave an uncertain outlook on the healthcare market.
Like-for-like revenue rose 11.9% from £138.7m to £155.3m, while pre-tax profit was £16.6m, up 11.1% from the same period last year. Meanwhile, net debt grew from £117.5m to £149.2m, while operating cash flow dipped slightly from £38.4m to £36.1m.
However, Synergy did warn that the current economic climate in the UK and Europe has created "increased cost awareness", having an impact on publicly funded healthcare markets: "This more challenging economic environment will ultimately have a positive impact on the rate of outsourcing, but whilst we have a period of uncertainty, customer decision making can be slow."
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Nevertheless, chief executive Richard Steeves remained confident that the group can achieve its full-year targets.
"We continue to make good progress with our strategy of developing Synergy's international presence in outsourced sterilisation services to hospitals and medical device manufacturers," he said. "The relatively resilient nature of the healthcare sector, our strong market position and barriers to entry, position us well to maintain growth."
The board will pay an interim dividend of 6.82p per share, up 13.7% on the same period last year (2010: 6p).
The share price fell 1.16% to 810.5p by 08:39.
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