Low & Bonar posts a 42 per cent profit rise

FIBRE manufacturer Low & Bonar posted a 42 per cent jump in first-half pre-tax profit yesterday, as robust sales in Western Europe and higher selling prices offset rising raw material costs.

The firm said it was upbeat about the following year. “With good trading momentum, selling prices increased and polymer prices beginning to stabilise, the group is confident of delivering another year of significant progress,” it said in a statement.

The British firm, which supplies yarn, fabric and fibre to end-markets like civil engineering, transport and sport, also raised its interim dividend by 40 per cent to 0.7p a share.

The company, which restructured its loss-making technical yarns business, said it was confident that the division would turn profitable this year.

December-May pre-tax profit was £11.2m, compared with £7.9m a year ago. Revenue rose 17 per cent to £182.6m.

Low & Bonar’s shares, which have gained more than a quarter of their value since the beginning of the year, gained 9.8 per cent yesterday to close at 73p, giving the firm a market cap of £190.9m.