Lancashire high performance polymers firm reports 'strong ' year
Specialist Lancashire plastics firm Victrex has seen sales and profits bounce back this year from the effects of the pandemic on trade.
The Thornton firm, which makes hi-tech polymers used in a variety of sectors from medicine to automotive and aerospace to mobile phone screens, said its pre-tax profit rose by 46 per cent to £92.5m in the year ending September 30.
Its sales were up to 4,373 tonnes from 3,492 tonnes, while Group revenue was up to £306.3m from £266.0m in 2020, a rise of 15 per cent.
The firm, founded at the former ICI Hillhouse site on the banks of the Wyre has 40 years’ experience, in polymers such as PEEK and PAEK, semi-finished and finished parts for a variety of customers.
The busy year meat that a dividend of 109.56p will be paid to shareholders.
Jakob Sigurdsson, chief executive, said: “Victrex delivered a solid and sustainable recovery during 2021, following the impact we saw from the pandemic in 2020.
We saw strong volume growth in several end-markets and strong cash generation, supporting investment and shareholder returns.
“Automotive, Electronics and Value Added Resellers were our standout end markets, with new application growth in our core business and notable milestones in our mega-programmes.
“These include TechnipFMC acquiring our equity in Magma as they prepare for scale up in Brazil, validating the technology for use in both traditional and new energy opportunities; good progress in the PEEK Knee clinical trial, with ten patients implanted to date; meaningful revenue in our PEEK Gears mega-programme; and a 50 per cent increase in the number of development programmes for E-mobility, which is now a mega-programme.”
He added that 80 per cent of our global regions now seeing staff return to site.
“For 2022, at this early stage, our assumptions are for year-on-year progress in full year sales volumes, with several end-markets expected to see further recovery, including in Medical, which will support our sales mix.
“In addition to a sizeable currency headwind, like most industrial companies, we are facing increased raw material and energy costs, which will impact us particularly in the first half, although mitigation plans are progressing.”
The firm is looking to open a new plant in China in the coming year.