- Diploma has made a robust start to the year with overall trading in line with expectations, according to an update ahead of today's annual general meeting.

It said: "Group revenues in the first quarter ended 31 December 2016 increased by 23% on a reported basis over the comparable period last year.

"At constant exchange rates, group revenues increased by 6%, with acquisitions completed during the last twelve months contributing 2% net and underlying organic growth of 4%.

"The very substantial depreciation of UK sterling against all the major global currencies contributed a 17% increase to reported Group revenues.

"In the Life Sciences Sector, revenues were up 11%, reflecting the impact of currency movements on translation of the results of the Healthcare businesses.

"On an underlying basis, revenues were down 1% due to weaker sales of capital equipment against a strong comparative last year.

"In the Seals Sector, revenues increased by 22%, up 1% on an underlying basis, again reflecting the impact of currency movements on translation.

"In North America, the Aftermarket businesses showed good growth and stronger activity, which offset the impact of a weak manufacturing sector on the Industrial OEM businesses; International revenues showed modest growth.

"In the Controls Sector, reported revenues were up 39% with Cablecraft, acquired in March 2016, making a significant contribution.

"On an underlying basis, after adjusting for currency and acquisitions, revenues increased by 13%, driven by strong growth in the Clarendon specialty fastener business, but also against the background of weak comparatives in other Controls businesses.

"The Group's operating margin remains in line with expectations and slightly ahead of the comparable period last year."

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