Company News in Brief

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Etonbrook Properties, the commercial property developer and a former Business Expansion Scheme company, has seen a sharp drop in pre-tax profits from pounds 1.6m to pounds 182,000 for the year to 31 March after an exceptional charge of pounds 400,000. The charge was related to write-downs in the company's stock of properties. It announced a capital reorganisation with a view to return surplus proceeds from property sales to shareholders. The company said that as part of its future development it could make use of its listing on the Stock Exchange by merging wijth a trading company. Total dividend is held at 2.75p.

Hilcare, the USM-quoted maker of electronic, security and lighting products, reported a fall in pre-tax profits to pounds 59,000 ( pounds 194,000) for the year to 31 March. The company said: 'The results were impacted by an exceptional bad debt of pounds 59,000 incurred after the year end.' The dividend was held at 0.5p.

Peter Cox made pounds 903,000 ( pounds 932,000) pre-tax profit in the year to 28 December on sales of pounds 30.5m ( pounds 34.3m).

ML Laboratories made first half pre-tax losses of pounds 447,000 against a previous loss of pounds 172,000. There was no interim dividend.

NMC Group full year pre-tax profits were pounds 5.01m against pounds 7.39m. There was no final dividend making 1.25p vs 3.55p.