US restraint hits Cobham

Posted on 3 Nov 2010 by The Manufacturer

British aerospace manufacturer Cobham has seen its share price plummet by 8% after revealing that its sales have suffered this year as a result of delayed US defence contracts.

The Dorset company has a strong presence in global aerospace and defence markets and makes a range of electronic communication devices for military applications.

In an interim mangement statement released today, it said that its commercial markets remain “stable, but fragile” and that its Aviation Services Division “has continued to deliver good organic growth.” However, delays and deferrals of defence contract awards from the US have led to the Technology Divisions – Avionics and Surveillance, Defence Systems and Mission Systems – under performing against 2009’s sales books.

Positively though, the firm has decreased its net debt from £373m at the end of June to £319m at the end of September, mostly, it says, because of strong operating cash conversion in the period and favourable exchange movements.

And its Excellence in Delivery programme remains on track and is expected to provide £10m wrth of cost efficiencies this year. A detailed presentation on the programme will be made at an investor day on 30 November 2010.

The company said last month’s Strategic Defence and Security Review and emphasis on countering terrorism provides “support” for its strategy.

A FTSE-100 company, Cobham employs over 12,000 people globally and has revenues of around £1.9bn.