Bodycote confident as first-half profit tops £40m

Macclesfield-based heat treatment and thermal processing giant Bodycote plc said on Thursday its revenue increased 2% to £312.9 million in the six months to June 30, 2021, and it made a profit before tax of £40.5 million compared to a loss of £3.8 million in H1 of 2020.

Bodycote said it expects to deliver a full-year result “in the upper half of the range of expectations.”

Interim dividend will rise to 6.2p from 6p.

First-half general industrial revenues increased 9% to £126.7 million in the period — but against 2019, these revenues were down 5%.  

First-half Automotive revenues increased 34% to £91.7 million — but these revenues were down 8% against 2019.

Aerospace and defence revenues were down 16% to £71 million. Against 2019, these revenues were down 24%. 

Bodycote CEO Stephen Harris said: “Bodycote’s headline operating margin, at 15.6%, has recovered strongly, boosted by good operational performance and net savings from the 2020 restructuring programme.

“AGI margins are above 20% for the first time, while ADE margins have also improved over the previous half year.

“Revenues in the Automotive and General Industrial market sectors have shown good recovery, even if end market performance has been held back by the global chip shortage and supply chain constraints more generally.

“Civil Aerospace revenues are yet to rebound and, while prospects for this recovery continue to improve as civil air traffic returns and the OEMs increase production rates, no material increase in our business is expected in 2021.

“We expect growth to accelerate once short-term supply chain disruptions are eliminated in the Automotive and General Industrial markets and Civil Aerospace begins its upward climb, but none of these effects are expected to be material until 2022.

“However, the benefits of our 2020 restructuring programme continue to build and Bodycote is well placed to capitalise on increases in revenues as they occur.

“Given the developments in the first half and the anticipated second half performance, we now expect to deliver a result in the upper half of the range of expectations.”