Weir Group pumps out record result thanks to strong commodity market

City A.M. Reporter
PUMP maker Weir Group yesterday posted a 58 per cent rise in first half pre-tax profit and said a positive trend in equipment orders underpinned its confidence that the second half would be significantly ahead of last year.

Weir, which makes valves and pumps for the oil, mining and power industries, reported first half pre-tax profit of £144m compared with £91.4m in the same period of 2009. In June, Weir said a pick-up in original equipment orders over the previous two months helped it to guide towards an adjusted pre-tax profit for the first half of £140m.

The company, whose customers include EDF, Rio Tinto and Royal Dutch Shell, said order input stood at £863m, 24 per cent higher than the first six months of last year with original equipment input up 28 per cent.

Weir also said it was increasing the interim dividend to 6.0p, up by 25 per cent compared to what it paid out in the same time period last year. The average forecast for full-year pre-tax profit is £259.7m.

Chief executive Keith Cochrane said: “Our growth plan is well on track across all our divisions and the strong increase in orders demonstrates our robust business model and ability to respond quickly to the changing economic environment.”

Shares in Weir , which have risen by 74 per cent since the beginning of the year closed flat at 1,226p yesterday, valuing the company at £2.47bn.