Space tech firm e2v expects a pickup after cuts hit revenues

A SLOWDOWN in defence and space programme spending has hit profitability at e2v Technologies, whose high-tech hardware is used in aircraft and satellites.

The company said yesterday that revenues in the year to the end of March had fallen from £220m to £197m, while operating profit was down from £41m to £32m, although the firm’s unadjusted profits actually improved slightly due to disposing of certain non-core businesses.

However, e2v’s chief executive Keith Attwood said that a recent pickup in orders meant that revenues are expected to grow modestly this year. The company’s projects include working with the European Space Agency – which yesterday said that former helicopter pilot Tim Peake will be the first British astronaut – as well as contributing parts to the Hubble Space Telescope.

“Looking forward, whilst we expect a slow start, we continue to anticipate modest revenue growth for the coming year, reflecting the strength of our order book,” Attwood said.

e2v, which also designs technology for medical and industrial hardware, saw shares take a battering during the financial crisis, although they have recovered somewhat. The firm finished up one per cent yesterday.