Chemical giant Johnson Matthey (JM) called its performance in the first half of the year “resilient”, as sales went up 21 per cent to £1.9bn and revenue increased 23 per cent.
Driven by the higher average price of precious metals, the company’s underlying operating profit also jumped to £293m, up 102 per cent and ahead of pre-pandemic levels.
“We delivered a resilient trading performance in what has been a challenging environment, given the supply chain volatility which has affected a number of our end markets,” said the company’s chief executive Robert MacLeod, who is set to retire from the helm after nearly eight years.
“To ensure we are focusing our resources on core growth opportunities we have taken some strategic decisions around our portfolio.
“In particular, we announced our intention to exit battery materials as we concluded that this business would not generate adequate returns for us.”
JM said today that following its exits, assets have been impaired by £314m.
The company announced earlier this month its intention to step away from the battery material business, because returns would not be enough to justify further investment, City A.M. reported.
Advanced glass technologies and Health business
“Today we are announcing that we have agreed the sale of advanced glass technologies and are in discussions about the potential sale of our health business,” MacLeod added.
JM’s advance glass technologies business was sold to manufacturer Fenzi Holdings for £178m payable in cash on a cash free, debt free basis.
The transaction, which will be completed by spring 2022, was brought forward as part of the company’s aim to create a more cohesive portfolio.