Defence firm says it will sell more of its business

Chemring at Segensworth
Chemring at Segensworth
University of Portsmouth group finance and business students, from left, back row Professor Diego Vazquez-Brust and head of the accounting and financial management subject group at the University of Portsmouth Andrew Wood. 'Front row, Louisa Burton, Faculty of Business and Law dean Professor Gioia Pescetto, Francesca Sharp, Amy Davidson

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SEGENSWORTH-based Chemring, which manufactures equipment for the military, has unveiled plans to sell off more parts of its business.

It sold off its marine flare company, which remains based in Havant, last year to Drew Marine.

Now it has said it has found further parts of its business it will be looking to sell off.

The company, which revealed its post-close results yesterday, did not name which particular parts of the business will be jettisoned.

The defence group, which makes pyrotechnic countermeasures and munitions as well as ejector seats, also revealed that sales had fallen 24 per cent to £185m in the fourth quarter as its order book shrank eight per cent to £702m.

However, its shares rose 22p or 11 per cent to 216.1p.

Chief executive Mark Papworth said: ‘Although the defence environment remains undeniably challenging, we continue to take the necessary steps to give
Chemring a stable platform and rebuild shareholder value.

‘These steps will be driven by the results of our strategic planning process that has crystallised our long-term objectives for the business, determined our strategy for the next three years and enabled a re-alignment of our portfolio.’

Shrinking public spending budgets have also hit the company and last month the group said the two-week US government shutdown and production problems at its Tennessee decoy-making plant were likely to trim its operating profits by £8m this year.

The US accounted for about 47 per cent of Chemring’s £740 million revenues last year.

Analysts had expected the group to post operating profits of £76.6m this year.

Chemring will announce its end of year results in January.