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  1. Technology
July 2, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:38pm


By CBR Staff Writer

Electronic and electrical equipment firm Radstone Technology Plc, Towcester, UK, is still recovering from the US government’s change in defense procurement procedures some two years ago (CI No 2,801), and continued to see losses last year, in spite of being in a period of recovery. Losses have begun to fall, down to $3m in the year to March 31, from $5.3m last time, on revenue that was almost static at $32.6m. The company underwent considerable restructuring in the previous year (CI No 2,693), and says its new product group performed well in its first year of operations. It has apparently managed to reduce product lead times substantially, and further reductions are expected this year. Last year also, the group’s manufacturing activities were spun off as a separate division, Eminent Technology, which it says has met with enthusiastic support from UK industry. An important target for this division is military systems integrators with mature systems that no longer want to do their own manufacturing. The group’s surface mount sub-contract assembler, Foundation Technology, had what the company calls another excellent year, and achieved third party sales of $5m, which was up 56% on last year. The company has also introduced new products in the year, including the Octegra graphics and image processor, and an enhanced rugged PowerPC product. Exports from the UK rose in the year, and totaled 63% of sales, up from 60% last year. Following the resolution of the budget dispute between President Clinton and the US congress last year, conventional Department of Defense procurement was restored, and Radstone says it saw the results of this in its first operating quarter. The company continued to make staff cuts and cut its overheads, which contributed to the reduction of loss per share. Although the company’s gearing was up very significantly from last year, to 91% from 58%, it was down from 99% at the half year stage. Chairman Rees Williams reckons the year just ended was a period of recovery in fortunes of the company. He says this year’s order books are strong, and forecasts strong recovery in the second half with a return to profit in the full year 1997/98. The company will pay no dividend. Figures were calculated at a rate of $1.665 to the pound.

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