Smiths Group faces challenge in healthcare markets as profits drop

Guy Bentley
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Global technology company Smiths Group has reported a fall in pre-tax profit of four per cent to £215m for the six months to 31 January. Revenue fell by two per cent to £1.4bn while the company's dividend rose two per cent to 12.75p.

Smiths said that its strength in commercial markets had been offset by challenges in the healthcare and defence markets. The company upped its investment in new product development by seven per cent to £57m.

Chief executive Philip Bowman, commented:

We made good progress in our businesses that serve commercial customers, while those with significant government and healthcare exposure continued to face challenging trading conditions.

The company anticipates improved underlying trading in the second half primarily driven by the John Crane order book, with further growth in Flex-Tex and recovery in in Smiths Interconnect.

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