- Plastics producer Victrex reported a 39% fall in annual profit as the pandemic crimped demand in end markets including automotive and medical, but the company reinstated its dividend citing a resilient cash position.

Pre-tax profit for the year through September dropped to £63.5 million, down from £104.7 million year-on-year, as revenue fell 10% to £266.0 million.

The company also booked £12.0 million of exceptional items that it said were driven by cost cutting actions.

Victrex declared a final dividend of 46.14p per share, though dividends for the full year were down 23% year-on-year because there was no interim payout.

Revenue in the second have had tumbled 23%, though there were now signs of it bottoming out in the auto, electronics and medical markets, Victrex said.

Chief executive Jakob Sigurdsson said the financial year has started 'solidly', although several end-markets, notably aerospace and energy, remained challenging.

'Whilst we will start to benefit from the actions we have taken on costs, some impact on margin will remain due to production volume being lower than sales volume and inventory unwind post Brexit,' Sigurdsson said.

'Consequently, our initial assumptions are that delivering a performance which improves on the 2020 financial year will be contingent on a better macro and end market environment in the second half of our 2021 financial year.'

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