Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Oxford Instruments swings back into profit

Oxford Instruments swung back to a profit in the year to the end of March 2018, driven by a strong performance from its materials and characterisation business and favourable currency movements.
Pre-tax profit came in at £34.2m versus a loss of £26.2m in 2017, although revenue slipped 1.1% to £296.9m.

Meanwhile, reported orders were up 5% to £313m, or 5.8% higher at constant currency, while net debt fell to £19.7m from £109.3m thanks to good operating cash flow and proceeds from the sale of Industrial Analysis.

Adjusted basic earnings per share rose 35.7% to 56.3p and the full-year dividend was lifted 2.3% to 13.3p a share.

The company, which provides high-technology products and systems for industry and research, saw good growth in the early implementation of its Horizon Strategy and a strong financial performance across materials & characterisation, driven by leading product portfolio and customer applications focus in growing markets.

It also saw a good second half performance in research & discovery, which was offset by a weaker first half, while profit and margin growth in the service & healthcare division was driven by services relating to its own products.

Chief executive Ian Barkshire said: "We have made good progress in the year with the early implementation of the Horizon strategy, which was introduced in May 2017.

"We have positioned the group to become a leading provider of high technology products and services to the world's leading industrial companies and scientific research communities to image, analyse and manipulate materials down to the atomic and molecular level. Our chosen end markets remain robust and, combined with our customer applications focus and improved core capabilities, provide strong long-term drivers for future growth and margin improvement."

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