Company News in Brief

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The Independent Online
Cookson Group, the building materials concern, intends to buy the electronic materials businesses of Union Carbide Corporation for an undisclosed sum.

Readicut International sold Firth Furnishings and its subsidiary company, Firth Europe, to Rieter- Scragg, a subsidiary of Rieter Holding, for a cash price of pounds 9.81m.

A Beckman, the textile merchant and property trader, increased pre- tax profits to pounds 507,000 ( pounds 342,000) in the six months to 31 December, helped by a near-doubling in turnover to pounds 10.4m ( pounds 5.7m). EPS 2.9p (2.2p). Dividend is held at 1.2p.

Year ended 31 December

Clarke Nickolls & Coombs, the property investment group, recovered from pounds 711,000 taxable loss to pounds 99,000 pre-tax profit. EPS 0.48p (LPS 2.5p). No dividend.

Frank G Gates, the motors distributor, drove pre-tax profits sharply higher to pounds 2.1m ( pounds 886,000) on pounds 76.5m ( pounds 56.7m) turnover. EPS 6.45p (3.65p). Total dividend rose to 2.75p (2.25p).

Home Counties Newspapers recorded lower pre-tax profits of pounds 459,000 ( pounds 863,000). Turnover edged up to pounds 24m ( pounds 23m). EPS fell to 4.59p (8.36p). Total dividend is 4.5p (6p).

Severfield-Reeve, structural steel fabricator and erector, turned around from pounds 987,000 taxable loss to pounds 407,000 pre-tax profit. EPS 2.19p (LPS 5.53p). Dividend is 0.25p.

Thompson Clive Investments, the investment company, returned higher pre-tax profits of pounds 715,000 ( pounds 565,000). EPS 4.3p (3.5p). Dividend is maintained at 3.8p.