LONDON–Despite a lackluster fourth quarter, the Cookson Group reported fiscal year revenue climbed 23% to ₤2.203 billion (US$3.039  billion). Trading profits were ₤216.3 million (US$298.3 million), up 11% from 2007.

Headline earnings per share rose 9%, while headline profit climbed 18% to ₤176.3 million (US$243.1 million). Rights issues were successfully completed at the beginning of the month, generating ₤241 million (US$332.3 million) in net proceeds and reducing the company’s debt.
The fourth-quarter slide has continued into the first quarter, and Cookson plans to reduce its cost base by ₤40 million (US$55.2 million).
The electronics division saw a year-over-year revenue increase of 11% to ₤620 million (US$854.9 million) at reported exchange rates. Trading profits were down 11%, at reported exchange rates, to ₤51.7 million (US$71.3 million).
Fiscal year revenue for assembly materials fell 10% to ₤382 million (US$526.8 million) on an increase in metal prices, especially tin and silver. Revenue for the chemistry product line dropped 9% to ₤238 million (US$328.2 million) on the sharp decline in the electronics and automotive markets. 
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