BAE Systems has posted a profit of £1.605m for 2018 - up £186m on the previous year.
The company's sales fell slightly to £18,407m - down from £18,487m in 2017 but order intake was up from £20,257m to £28,280m and the order backlog has risen from £38.7bn in 2017 to £48.4bn in 2018.
Charles Woodburn, Chief Executive, said: “The group made good progress in strengthening the outlook and geographic base of the business, with a number of significant contract wins. The defence order backlog is now at a record high with visibility on many of our key programmes through the next decade.
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"Delivering a strong operational performance and continued investment will enable us to meet our growth expectations and underpin the long term.”
Chris Boardman, Group Managing Director, Air, said:
"This has been a remarkable year for the UK’s combat air sector and for our people. In 2018, major milestones were achieved to strengthen the UK’s air power today, and critical steps taken to secure its future.
“Our teams have been focused on supporting the RAF in each of these priorities, from planning for the retirement of the hugely successful Tornado, to enhancing Typhoon with the latest capability and playing a key role as the F-35 enters operational service.
"And of course, we have been a part of a key moment in history, with the launch of the UK’s ambitious combat air strategy and the unique opportunity our people have to develop the critical technologies of the future as part of Team Tempest. That’s why we’re recruiting a record number of apprentices - to ensure we have the right skills to continue to support the Armed Forces well into the future.”
BAE Systems Air employs around 12,500 in the UK across sites including Warton and Samlesbury near Preston.