Company News in Brief

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Year to 31 December

Ash & Lacy, galvanisers and makers of perforated metal and storage tanks, fell to pounds 3.4m (pounds 3.7m) pre-tax profit. Earnings per share are 8.26p (9.76p). Total dividend is 6.4p.

Anglo Pacific Resources, the minerals mining firm, slashed taxable losses to pounds 163,000 (pounds 670,000). Loss per share was cut to 0.33p (0.86p).

Boxmore International, maker and distributor of packaging products and printed cardboard, announced a 23 per cent rise in pre-tax profits from pounds 3.6m to pounds 4.45m. The rising profits trend was maintained despite incurring a pounds 329,000 foreign exchange loss from adverse currency movements last year. Group sales grew to pounds 32.6m (pounds 32.1m). Earnings per share were up 22.1 per cent at 16p (13.1p). Total dividend improved to 4p (3.68p).

Cementone, the paints and building chemicals maker which came to the market in a reverse takeover this year, reported a 36 per cent increase in pre-tax profits of pounds 1.2m, in line with its forecast on entering the market. Earnings per share 4.05p.

Horace Clarkson, the insurer, shipowner and broker, more than doubled pre-tax profits to pounds 1.3m (pounds 500,000). A pounds 2.5m loss from insurance broking was more than offset by a 36 per cent rise in shipbroking profits to pounds 4.5m. Earnings per share are 2.2p (1.3p). Total dividend is 1.75p (1.5p).

London Securities, the property and investment company, sharply reduced taxable losses from pounds 38.2m to pounds 342,000 in the 18 months to 31 December. Loss per share was cut to 0.6p (51.7p). No dividend.