CHLORIDE, which provides protection against power supply disruption, posted a 33 per cent increase in 2008 profit yesterday and said it had made a good start to the current year.
Finance director Neil Warner said the group’s order book at the end of March, at a record £138m, already covered 40 per cent of the market’s estimated sales for the current year.
“We’re seeing strength in areas like oil, gas and energy, that some of our competitors aren’t in,” he said.
Rival Emerson Electric said last month order trends had worsened in April and offered a gloomy outlook for Europe, while France’s Schneider Electric said it expected a 15 per cent drop in sales this year.
“We’ve been able to temper the impact of the downturn with our breadth of market and geographies,” Warner said, adding that business outside western Europe now accounted for 43 per cent of group sales, up from just 25 per cent two or three years ago.
Analysts highlighted the late cycle nature of Chloride’s business and said prices could come under pressure.
“People do worry that Chloride is late-cycle, but this was a reassuring set of results,” said analyst Ian Robertson at Seymour Pierce.