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FTSE 250 plastics specialist Essentra (LON:ESNT) returned to profit growth for the first time since 2015 during the six months ended 30th June, with reported operating profits rising by 7.6% at constant exchange rates.
The interim dividend was maintained at 6.3p and management said that the company was on track to meet expectations for the full year. Shares in the company climbed by 6.73% to 514p (as of 14:45 BST).
Chief Executive Paul Forman said: “Our Components business continued to deliver strong organic growth and has also now completed two acquisitions, in line with our strategy to selectively add high quality, value enhancing businesses to the Group. Filters is improving its focus on innovation and key customer account management capabilities, and continues to make progress with its three potential “game changers”, while we have also now developed strategies for each of our six Specialist Components businesses.
Importantly, I believe we have now turned a corner in Packaging, although there is still much to do. The sequential improvement in 2018 in both the revenue trend and profitability is testament to the significant efforts we have made to stabilise the business, to focus on doing the basics better and to become an increasingly valued partner to our customers. As a result, our Europe & Asia Packaging business returned to underlying growth (ie, adjusting for the closure of our Newport cartons site), and we are confident of reaching an inflection point for the entire Packaging division during the second half of this year.
There remains much to do to restore the Group to sustainable, profitable growth. However, together we are delivering against a clear plan and are making significant progress in building a brighter future for Essentra“.