De La Rue sends another alert on setback

The banknotes printer De La Rue issued yet another profit warning yesterday after a fresh setback to its three-year recovery plan.

The Bank of England's currency supplier set a three-year recovery plan in 2011, after the group was nearly taken over by French rival Oberthur. De La Rue found itself vulnerable after producing faulty notes for the Reserve Bank of India, one of the 200-year-old company's biggest customers.

But shares in the company fell nearly 10 per cent yesterday after it warned profits in the 12 months to March next year would be £10m short of the £100m target its chief executive Tim Cobbold had set to win back disillusioned investors. The shares fell 95.5p to 885.5p. De La Rue said that print volumes across the more than 150 currencies it produces were down 10 per cent in the first half of the year to 2.6 billion notes. "Overcapacity" in the banknotes market has also hurt prices.

The division that sorts, counts and authenticates banknotes has been loss making in the first six months, though management has started to overhaul the business.

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