Cookson Group recently announced a strong improvement in its continuing operations for 2007, including a 6% increase in revenue to £1.6 billion (~ $3.2 billion) and a 17% increase in trading profit to £170 million (~ $342 million). The Ceramics division experienced underlying revenue growth of 11% and trading profit of £109 million (~ $220 million), up 25%, and continued investment in capacity for high-growth markets.
“2007 was another year of good progress for the Group,” said Nick Salmon, chief executive. “This was driven by a continued strong improvement in the Ceramics division, which produced almost two-thirds of the Group’s trading profit for the year. Ceramics will be further enhanced by the acquisition of Foseco, which we expect to complete next month [April 2008].
“The positive end-market trends experienced by Ceramics over the second half of last year have continued, and we are increasing production capacities in the higher-growth products and regions. In Electronics, we expect some slowing of growth rates for consumer electronics, but have been implementing efficiency improvements to offset this. Precious Metals faces a weak retail environment, but its performance should be helped by recent ongoing significant cost base reductions. We therefore anticipate a continuing strong performance in 2008.”
Following the recent anti-trust clearances by the EU and U.S. competition authorities and the approval of the transaction by Foseco’s shareholders, the approval by Cookson’s shareholders and court approval of the scheme of arrangement are now awaited. This should lead to the transaction being completed on April 4, 2008.
for additional details.