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17 Mar 17. Chemring Group Plc (“Chemring”, the “Group” or the “Company”).
Annual General Meeting – trading update for the four month period ended 26 February 2017. Chemring Group PLC today issued an update on current trading and outlook, to coincide with the Company’s Annual General Meeting.
The Group has started the year positively, continuing the momentum of the second half of last year. Order intake in the first four months of the year was in line with the Board’s expectations at £127.4m (28 February 2016: £88.9m).
Revenue during the four month period to 26 February 2017 was £145.6m (28 February 2016: £106.5m), reflecting both the significant weakening of sterling and the fulfilment of contracts in the Energetics Systems division.
The order book at 26 February 2017 was £556.9m (28 February 2016: £596.3m, 31 October 2016: £592.9m), the reduction since 31 October 2016, half being attributable to the weaker dollar against sterling and half to stable operational performance resulting in some order backlog being cleared.
Net debt at 26 February 2017 was £146.4m (28 February 2016: £141.4m, 31 October 2016: £87.6m). The increase in net debt since 31 October 2016 reflects the investment in working capital required to fund the execution of contracts in the Energetics division, which continue to perform well and, assuming an extension of the existing letter of credit is agreed, are expected to be strong contributors to 2017 performance. This investment is expected to be sustained at the half year, but partially reverse in the second half of the financial year.
The Company announced on 19 January 2017 that, in view of the Group’s improved trading performance for 2016, the Board intended to pay a final dividend of 1.3p in respect of the year ended 31 October 2016. This year’s notice of AGM omitted the resolution seeking shareholder approval for the payment of a final dividend of 1.3p per ordinary share. Accordingly, the Board will, in accordance with its powers under the Company’s articles of association, today declare a dividend in place of the proposed final dividend. The dividend will not require the approval of shareholders. The amount of this dividend shall be 1.3p per ordinary share. This dividend will be paid on 18 May 2017 to all shareholders who were on the Register of Members on 28 April 2017. The amount of the dividend and the timing of payment will therefore be the same as the final dividend previously proposed.
The Board’s expectations for trading for the full year remain unchanged. As expected, the seasonality of the business and customer requirements will mean that trading performance and cashflows will be weighted to the second half, but this is expected to be less pronounced than in the prior year.
Interim results for the six months ended 30 April 2017 will be announced on 22 June 2017.
17 Mar 17. ABG says investors interested in acquiring major stake. Indian naval shipbuilder ABG confirmed on 16 March that investors have expressed interest in acquiring a major stake of the company as it looks to offload mounting debt. The Mumbai-based shipbuilder said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange that its “lenders have invited expressions of interest [to acquire a] majority stake in ABG. Accordingly, a few parties have expressed their interest.” The company, which is currently building training ships for the Indian Navy, did not provide details about the potential investors. Reports in India have suggested that companies to have expressed interest in acquiring a 51% stake in ABG include Reliance Defence and Engineering Limited (RDEL), formerly Pipavav Defence Offshore and Engineering, and UK indus