Bluebird back in the black

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Bluebird Toys, maker of Polly Pocket, the Big Red Fun Bus and the Jumbo Fun Plane, a new product, has returned to the black after a pounds 4.5m first-half loss last year, writes Topaz Amoore.

Pre-tax profits in the six months to 30 June were pounds 234,000 on record interim turnover of pounds 17.4m, up from pounds 11.6m last time. The company said it expected to be able to consider a dividend payment at the year-end.

Bluebird has finished its reorganisation programme, which accounted for a pounds 3.34m exceptional cost at the same stage last year. Overheads were cut after its Swindon plant in Wiltshire was closed and output moved to Merthyr Tydfil, Mid Glamorgan. The company has an 'excellent' range of new toys for 1993.

International sales went up by 78 per cent to pounds 8.67m. Domestic sales were also ahead by 29 per cent at pounds 8.71m.

Earnings per share were 2.6p against a loss of 46.1p. The shares closed down 2p at 114p.