Xaar plc issues interim management statement


Xaar plc, the digital inkjet printing technology Group headquartered in Cambridge, UK, has issued an Interim Management Statement covering trading from 1 January 2014.

Current trading
Trading for the period was consistent with the Board's expectations, with sales and profits following the normal seasonal pattern around Chinese New Year.  This trend was in contrast with the abnormal experience of the first quarter of 2013, when a rapid acceleration of the adoption of Xaar's technology into Chinese ceramic tile manufacturing disrupted the normal seasonal pattern of sales.

As expected, operating margin in the first quarter reduced compared to the exceptional margin achieved in 2013 due to revenue seasonality, on-going investment in the Huntingdon capacity expansion programme (resulting in increased depreciation and other manufacturing overheads) and continued investment in R&D.

During the period the Group was pleased to announce the launch of the Xaar 1002 printhead, and development programmes remain on track to launch, in 2014, the Xaar 501 (targeted at both the graphics and packaging markets), the Xaar XPM (a gigabit-Ethernet based electronics sub-system) and to market test a new 200nl drop technology (for industrial coatings).

Financial position
The Group's balance sheet remains strong with net cash at 31 March 2014 of £49.5 million (31 December 2013: £53.5 million).  The reduction in cash during the first quarter principally reflected capital expenditures related to the capacity expansion programme in Huntingdon.

The Board remains confident that its expectations will be achieved for the full year.  In 2014 a more stable contribution is expected to be provided by the ceramic decoration segment, following the substantial increase in 2013.


This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange



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