Profits dip at Chloride on flat sales

POWER protection company Chloride Group yesterday posted a 16 per cent drop in adjusted pre-tax profits for the half year, but said it was confident about its prospects for the year.<br /><br />The firm, which protects against power shortages at Heathrow Airport&rsquo;s Terminal 5 and Arsenal&rsquo;s Emirates stadium, posted adjusted pre-tax profit of &pound;16.2m and said total sales were broadly flat at &pound;152.7m in the six months ended 30 September.<br /><br />Product sales were down 6.3 per cent at &pound;94.2m from &pound;100.6m a year earlier, despite a robust performance in the group&rsquo;s energy and infrastructure division which offset weakness in the smaller capacity market.<br /><br />The group said service sales were up by 13.1 per cent at &pound;58.5m.<br /><br />Chief executive Tim Cobbold said: &ldquo;We enter the second half with good order book coverage, and with trading in with expectations. This background gives us confidence in the full outlook for the business.&rdquo;<br /><br />Chloride said its current restructuring plan, which it expects to incur costs of &pound;6m for the full year, will generate savings of &pound;1.5m in the full year, and &pound;2.5m a year thereafter.&nbsp; <br /><br />The group increased its interim dividend by three per cent to 1.9p a share.<br /><br />Chloride shares yesterday lifted by 0.3 per cent to 162p.