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12 March 2003

Highlights:

  • Operating profits of 180m (before goodwill), down 1% on a year ago.
  • EPS of 20.8p on ordinary activities: Interim dividend maintained at 8.75p.
  • Productivity gains counteract 10m adverse currency and 10m higher R&D.
  • Operating cash at 88% of operating profit (after capex), and free cash-flow of 92m.
  • Further progress on disposals and acquisitions to strengthen the business.
  • Pensions not a major issue for Smiths, FRS17 adopted.

 

Commenting on the results, Keith Butler-Wheelhouse, Chief Executive said:

While the business environment continued to deteriorate, we held sales to within 2% and operating profits to within 1% of a year ago, and delivered profits largely in cash. This first half achievement, coupled with continued productivity gains in the second half, provide confidence in our outlook for the full year, subject to the outcome of the current uncertain geopolitical situation.

An audio webcast of a meeting with analysts at 9.00 am UK time can be accessed on http://www.smiths-group.com/interim2003, and the meeting can be heard on +44 (0) 20 7784 1018

ENDS

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