Black cab maker Manganese Bronze narrows losses

Manganese Bronze, maker of London's traditional black cabs, reported a narrower loss for 2010, and said it was well placed to post a profit this year.

The company, which is 20 per cent owned by China's largest private automaker Geely Automobile said it made a pretax loss of £6.3m, compared to £7.3m in 2009.

The company said it had increased its London market share from 75 per cent to 82 per cent since the launch of its new TX4 model range, although difficult trading conditions had seen overall turnover drop 4.8 percent to £69.6m on slightly lower new vehicle sales.

Net debt increased from £5.1m to £14.4m.

Manganese Bronze, which recently agreed its biggest London taxi order with a company in Azerbaijan, worth $27m, said that having restructured its UK operations and switched the sourcing of components to Chinese suppliers, 2011 should see a return to profit.

"The group is well positioned to return to profitability in 2011 and make further progress with joint initiatives with Geely," chief executive John Russell said in a statement.