BPI upbeat after rise in first-half profits

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Packaging group British Polythene Industries (BPI) today said it was looking forward to a good performance in the second half of the year after enjoying a 5 per cent rise in first-half profits.

The Greenock-based firm posted a pre-tax profit of £14.8 million for the six months to 30 June, up from £14.1m a year earlier, on turnover that was flat at £281.1m.

Chairman Cameron McLatchie said: “The good performance in the UK and Europe has continued into the second half, our order books are sound and we now anticipate a good outcome for 2014.”

Shareholders will receive an interim dividend of 5p on 14 November, up from 4.5p a year ago.

BPI also said next month’s referendum presents a number of risks around currency, pensions, taxation and trade “due to a lack of clarity on the practical implications of a vote in favour of Scottish independence”.

It added: “Whilst the group is headquartered in Scotland and has three manufacturing sites in Scotland, it is registered in England and carries out a majority of its activities outside Scotland. Deliveries to customers in Scotland represent less than 5 per cent of total group sales.”