Soaring demand lifts Huntleigh

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The Independent Online
SOARING demand in the first half of this year helped Huntleigh Technology, the medical products company, report higher profits than last year's 12-month result.

Taxable profits have surged by 152 per cent to pounds 2.4m for the six months to 30 June on turnover up from pounds 9.8m to pounds 13m. This compared with a pounds 2.3m profit achieved for the full year in 1991.

Earnings per share jumped from 7.02p to 17.02p. The interim dividend has been improved 128 per cent to 4p.

The company's explosive growth stems from rising demand for its variable-pressure mattresses, used to prevent bed-sores in hospital patients.

In addition, the company manufactures ultrasonic monitors to measure foetal heartbeats.

The results, which were better than market estimates, include an exceptional pounds 120,000 profit on the disposal of an unwanted business.

A strong cash inflow helped to convert a pounds 174,000 interest charge the same time last year to a pounds 19,000 income in the first half.

The company is introducing a new range of patented technologies this year to meet tighter safety requirements in the United States, which it says will hit competitors.

About 40 per cent of group's profits emanate from the US, but there the results were not affected by currency movements. Huntleigh is planning to set up production facilities in the US, while the UK will meet European demand.