Victrex may move to US

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The Independent Online
Peter Rowley, chairman of Victrex, the high-tech plastics group, said yesterday that he had considered closing the group's UK operations and taking the company to the US.

Victrex, which sells only 3 per cent of its products in the UK but has its manufacturing and research plants here, has been badly affected by the strength of the pound. The group issued a profits warning in January after failing to hedge against the pound. Profits for the six months to March fell 19 per cent to pounds 5.1m.

Mr Rowley said that with half its business in the US, Victrex had considered a Nasdaq listing: "Closing our UK operations takes the currency factor out of the equation."

However he stressed that this was a long-term consideration.

Explaining why there were so few UK sales, Mr Rowley launched a bitter attack on the British technology industry. "Can you name a major British- owned car company. Where do we feature in aerospace? Britain is not in the first league of world technology."