Pound's fall boosts Delta

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The Independent Online
STERLING'S devaluation has begun to boost export orders and deliveries at Delta, the cables, circuit breakers and plumbing fittings group, according to Robert Easton, chief executive.

Since the autumn, Delta's UK cable factories have seen a rise in orders from South-east Asia and the Middle East while circuit protection products have attracted renewed overseas demand.

Delta's pre-tax profits fell from pounds 64m to pounds 55m in 1992. The downturn, after a slight increase in net exceptional charges from pounds 1.8m to pounds 2m, reflected a further year of recession in the UK compounded by trading difficulties and restructuring costs in Delta's North American cable and Australian industrial services operations.

Alan Coats, an analyst with Paribas Capital Markets, said Delta looked a clear beneficiary of devaluation. He has increased his forecast of pre-tax profits from pounds 66m to pounds 70.5m for this year, and to pounds 81.5m for 1994. Delta shares rose 9p to 444p.

A sharp fall in demand for high- technology cables from the US defence industry at Delta's Surprenant subsidiary led to pre-tax losses of pounds 5m in North America after a pounds 3m restructuring charge. Restructuring in Australia also accounted for pounds 6.5m of a slump in profits in industrial services from pounds 21m to pounds 12.8m.

Cost-cutting enabled engineering activities, where Delta is a market leader in plumbing fittings, to ride out a downturn in Continental demand and report a small increase in profits from pounds 21.3m to pounds 22.2m.