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The Independent Online
Williamson Tea Holdings, which produces tea in India, Kenya and Tanzania, returned a significant increase in pre-tax profits from pounds 4.4m to pounds 6.15m for the six months to 30 September. Turnover rose from pounds 17.7m to pounds 20.6m. Earnings per share improved to 100.8p (74.33p). Interim dividend is maintained at 10p. The company said latest forecasts indicated that the profit before tax for the group should be in line with that of the previous year as the seasonal nature of tea growing meant that the crop was not harvested equally throughout the year.

Hopkinsons, the industrial abrasives, control equipment, and plastics group, has warned that 'the prospects for the rest of the year are somewhat clouded'. The company said it was now apparent that despite progress in some areas, the group would incur a pre-tax loss in the second half but achieve a profit for the year as a whole. The chairman made references to the difficulties being experienced in the Bryan Donkin Engineering and the Carborundum Abrasives operations.