- Bodycote said it expected annual revenue to be higher than previously estimated and headline operating profit to be slightly ahead of market expectations as revenue jumped 7% in the first four months of the year.

For the four months ended 30 April 2018, revenue rose 7% to £243m compared to the same period a year ago, and 10% higher at constant currency, amid growth across all its divisions.

ADE revenues were up 5% to £94m, AGI revenues were up 9% to £149m, while specialist technologies' revenues grew 12% at constant currency.

In the markets in which Bodycote operates it saw car and light truck revenues grow 8% amid strong emerging markets and good growth in Western Europe, while civil aerospace revenues grew 4%, held back by restrained demand in France stemming from capacity shortfall.

Energy revenues, meanwhile, grew 24%, with continued strong growth in onshore North American revenues, and early signs of an upturn in Western Europe oil & gas revenues.

Margins continued to improve during period, the company said, although the profit drop-through from incremental sales had been partially offset by increased investment in business development.

General industrial revenues, which account for nearly 40% of Bodycote's business , were 11% higher with good growth across all geographies.

The firm said it would pay a final dividend of 12.1p per share and special dividend of 25.0p per share on 1 June 2018, at a total cost of £71m.

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