Spectris (SXS)

Sector:

Electronic and Electrical Equipment

Index:

FTSE 250

3,896.00p
   
  • Change Today:
    -83.00p
  • 52 Week High: 4,083.00p
  • 52 Week Low: 2,406.00p
  • Currency: UK Pounds
  • Shares Issued: 111.53m
  • Volume: 76,978
  • Market Cap: 4,345.06m
  • RiskGrade: 107

Spectris pleased with first quarter sales growth

By Josh White

Date: Thursday 22 Apr 2021

LONDON (ShareCast) - (Sharecast News) - Spectris reported a 5% improvement in group like-for-like sales in its first quarter on Thursday.
The FTSE 250 precision measurement technology company said disposals reduced sales by 6%, however, which when combined with a 3% negative foreign currency exchange movement, resulted in a 4% decrease in reported sales to 289.4m.

In the three months ended 31 March, it said orders grew 5% on a like-for-like basis, or by 10% excluding its Brel & Kjr Vibro and Millbrook operations.

Like-for-like sales increased "notably" in Asia, the board said, driven by a "very strong" performance in China, although against an easier comparator given the early impact of Covid-19 there in 2020.

In Europe and North America, like-for-like sales were 1% and 2% lower, respectively, with energy and utilities and automotive being the weaker markets there.

From an end market perspective, Spectris said like-for-like sales were the strongest among pharmaceutical and machine manufacturing customers, continuing the positive momentum reported in the latter part of 2020.

Like-for-like sales were also higher to the electronics, semiconductors, telecoms and aerospace and defence markets.

Although sales were lower to automotive, energy and utilities and to academic research customers, the company said the backdrop had been improving, and all of the end markets saw growth in Asia.

The firm said it continued to be highly cash generative, reporting net cash at the end of March of 334.8m, up from 106.1m on 31 December following receipt of 212.7m in cash from the divestments of Brel & Kjr Vibro and Millbrook, and reflecting the ongoing spend on the

200m share buyback programme.

As at 21 April, the group said it had bought back 816,014 shares for a total cost of 27.3m.

Spectris said it had agreed with private equity group SCF Partners for it to acquire ESG Solutions via an existing company in its portfolio, Deep Imaging Technologies, for a headline value of CAD 4m (2.3m).

Given its end market exposure and smaller scale, Spectris said it had decided to divest ESG, with the transaction set to be the fourth in its portfolio simplification programme.

As it said in its full-year results, Spectris had acquired a minority holding in a US-listed entity in support of a potential acquisition opportunity.

The board said the merger had now completed, and in April it received $52.65m (38.15m) in cash in exchange for the holding, which originally cost $19.8m.

Activities to establish the Spectris Foundation using part of that gain were said to be "well underway".

In relation to the acquisition of Concurrent Real-Time, the group said it was still on track for the transaction to complete in the second quarter.

"We have started the year strongly," said chief executive officer Andrew Heath.

"At the time of our full-year results, we stated that the order intake in the last quarter of 2020 provided good momentum coming into 2021 and that has been borne out.

"The order book has been further strengthened through the first quarter."

Heath said he was "very pleased" with the group's performance, which was ahead of its expectations at the year-end.

"The growth in sales reflects the execution of our strategic growth initiatives and the recovery in many of our end markets.

"The recovery has been faster than expected, especially in pharmaceutical and semiconductor, supported by our sustained investment in research and development, and the programme of recent new product launches across our businesses.

"Our order book provides confidence that this positive momentum should continue and with our improved cost base, this creates a strong operating leverage opportunity."

The company was "confident" that it was well-positioned for continued market recovery in 2021, Andrew Heath added.

"While the first quarter has seen economies recovering, albeit at varying speeds, we are again seeing Covid-19 cases rising and lockdowns still prevalent in a number of the countries in which we operate.

"We continue to ensure we support both our employees and our customers, whilst progressing our strategic initiatives to take advantage of the recovery."

At 0847 BST, shares in Spectris were down 1% at 3,266p.

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Note 1: Prices and trades are provided by Digital Look Corporate Solutions and are delayed by at least 15 minutes.

Note 2: RiskGrade figures are provided by RiskMetrics.

 

Spectris Market Data

Currency UK Pounds
Share Price 3,896.00p
Change Today -83.00p
% Change -2.09 %
52 Week High 4,083.00p
52 Week Low 2,406.00p
Volume 76,978
Shares Issued 111.53m
Market Cap 4,345.06m
RiskGrade 107

Spectris Star Ratings

Compare performance with the sector and the market.
more star ratings
Key: vs Market vs Sector
Value
58.2% below the market average58.2% below the market average58.2% below the market average58.2% below the market average58.2% below the market average
71.43% above the sector average71.43% above the sector average71.43% above the sector average71.43% above the sector average71.43% above the sector average
Price Trend
72.74% above the market average72.74% above the market average72.74% above the market average72.74% above the market average72.74% above the market average
18.92% above the sector average18.92% above the sector average18.92% above the sector average18.92% above the sector average18.92% above the sector average
Income
55.68% below the market average55.68% below the market average55.68% below the market average55.68% below the market average55.68% below the market average
22.22% above the sector average22.22% above the sector average22.22% above the sector average22.22% above the sector average22.22% above the sector average
Growth
50.39% below the market average50.39% below the market average50.39% below the market average50.39% below the market average50.39% below the market average
70.59% below the sector average70.59% below the sector average70.59% below the sector average70.59% below the sector average70.59% below the sector average

What The Brokers Say

Strong Buy 4
Buy 3
Neutral 4
Sell 0
Strong Sell 2
Total 13
buy
Broker recommendations should not be taken as investment advice, and are provided by the authorised brokers listed on this page.

Spectris Dividends

  Latest Previous
  Interim Final
Ex-Div 07-Oct-21 13-May-21
Paid 12-Nov-21 30-Jun-21
Amount 23.00p 46.50p

Trades for 28-Sep-2021

Time Volume / Share Price
11:03 186 @ 3,896.00p
11:03 49 @ 3,896.00p
11:03 65 @ 3,896.00p
11:03 42 @ 3,896.00p
11:03 5 @ 3,897.00p

Spectris Key Personnel

CEO Andrew Heath
CFO Derek Harding

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