BOC hit by 22% slide in turnover
Wednesday 10 February 1999
Including joint ventures and associates, and excluding businesses that have been sold, turnover at the industrial gases group was still down 8 per cent and operating profit down 10 per cent at pounds 104.4m.
The long-term restructuring and cost-saving programme that hammered last year's profits is on track to start contributing pounds 50m to profit in the current year and pounds 120m a year in due course, the chief executive Danny Rosencrantz said yesterday.
Margins in the industrial gases division remain steady in spite of a drop in demand from the steel industry, and its operating profit was down just 1 per cent at pounds 94.4m.
There are signs that the vacuum technology division which supplies the worldwide semi-conductor industries has turned the corner in spite of a slump in profits to just pounds 1.6m.
The distribution business produced an operating profit of pounds 7.9m, an improvement of 27 per cent.
The adverse impact of the strong pound is visibly fading, and should be cut to pounds 6m if rates remain at their current level. But the market did not entirely share the company's confidence and the shares fell 67p to 796p.
The first quarter figures were below most forecasts and significantly below some.
Even the optimists were disappointed at the severity of competition in the United States and the poor returns in vacuum technology and could see no real sign of a return to easier business conditions.
Forecasts for the current year have been downgraded from pounds 415m to around pounds 390m, and earnings of 54.3p, and pounds 415m and 57.5p next year.
Even after the setback yesterday the shares are trading on 14-times future earnings, which looks high enough in current conditions.
- 3 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 4 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 5 Isis publicly behead man in Syrian town square for 'insulting Allah' as he screams for help
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
Sir David Attenborough interview: The one question about life that still baffles him
Isis publicly behead man in Syrian town square for 'insulting Allah' as he screams for help
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
iJobs Money & Business
£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established ...
£23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive...
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Technical Report Writer is re...
Competitive salary & benefits!: MBDA UK Ltd: MBDA UK LTD Indirect Procurement...