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10 March 2004

Key messages Aerospace, Medical and Specialty Engineering all performing strongly Underlying growth impacted by contract timing in Detection Earnings per share of 17.5p, compared with 18.9p a year ago

  • Aerospace, Medical and Specialty Engineering all performing strongly
  • Underlying growth impacted by contract timing in Detection
  • Earnings per share of 17.5p, compared with 18.9p a year ago*
  • Consistently good profit-to-cash conversion
  • Net debt down to 206m from 715m from disposals and cash generation
  • Dividend unchanged at 8.75p
  • Full Year delivery remains on track

*continuing activities, before goodwill amortisation and exceptionals. On a statutory basis, earnings per share were 12.5p (2003: 20.4p).

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

Aerospace, Medical and Specialty Engineering all achieved good growth in this period. As expected, Detection was down compared with a very strong first half a year ago. The recovery in Detection in the second half and continued progress in the rest of Smiths underline our confidence in the outlook for the full year.

ENDS

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