LONDON (Sept. 10)—Tomkins P.L.C., parent of Gates Rubber Co. and other related units, anticipates continued improvements in its financial performance throughout the rest of 2004, based on "tangible progress" in the first half despite "sharply increasing" raw material costs and a weaker U.S. dollar.
For the six months ended June 30, Tomkins reported a 6.3-percent gain in operating profit to $249.9 million but a 3.2-percent drop in net sales to $2.72 billion, based on the weakening dollar-pound exchange rate. The improved earnings pushed the profit/sales ratio up more than half a point to 9.4 percent.
Factoring out the negative currency effects would have put sales and earnings up by 7.3 and 16.8 percent, respectively, Tomkins said.
Tomkins' Industrial & Automotive business unit reported sales grew 4.1 percent for the quarter but only 1.4 percent for the six months. Operating earnings grew 12.2 percent in the quarter and 3.3 percent for the half.