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Yorkshire Group PLC (YOR)

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Tuesday 03 September, 2002

Yorkshire Group PLC

Interim Results

Yorkshire Group PLC
03 September 2002



                                                             3rd September, 2002



                 INTERIM RESULTS - SIX MONTHS TO 30th JUNE 2002

                                  KEY FEATURES

•       Trading conditions stabilised during first quarter of 2002.

•       Sales increase in second quarter of 10% above the first quarter.

•       Borrowings unchanged at 30th June 2002 from the 2001 year
        end position of £34.8m.

•       Operating loss of £1.8m before exceptional items.

•       Strategic alliance with M. Dohmen GmbH.


Commenting on the results, Pat Barrett, the Chairman stated:

' The unexpected downturn in trading witnessed in June also affected Europe in
July but not the Americas business that recovered quickly.

In the second half of 2002, the holiday months of August and December will
hamper progress in returning to profitability although increased factory
activity levels are anticipated. In the absence of deterioration in market
conditions, achieving Group profitability is the Board's objective for 2003. In
this context 2002 is a transitional year. '



For further information, please contact:


Yorkshire Group plc
Andrew J Dick, Chief Executive
Martin Towers, Finance Director                       Tel: 0113 2443111

Citigate Dewe Rogerson
Patrick Toyne-Sewell / Seb Hoyle                      Tel: 020 7638 9571



CHAIRMAN'S STATEMENT

INTERIM RESULTS - SIX MONTHS TO 30th JUNE, 2002


Overview

Trading conditions in the six month period to 30th June 2002 stabilised during
the first quarter of 2002 following the significant downturn in activity levels
witnessed during 2001. This was followed in the second quarter by improved sales
running some 10% above the first quarter despite weaker trading than expected in
June.

The preoccupation of the Group is the management of its cash resources as
restructuring, primarily in Europe, continues apace. Costs and working capital
control have been top priorities during the first half of 2002.

Borrowings have been managed in line with expectations and at both 30th June
2002 and 31st December 2001 net debt stood at £34.8m despite an operating loss
of £4.7m after exceptional items in the six month period to 30th June 2002 and
restructuring costs of £2.5m during this period.

Our American business has performed very creditably with operating profit at the
same level as the comparable period in 2001, despite turnover being down 13% in
sterling terms. The Asia Pacific business reports identical turnover to the
comparable period last year but with a number of building blocks now in place to
develop the Group's business in this region in future. The new European
management team, appointed at the beginning of the year, has set about the major
task of restructuring their loss making business.  This process will continue
into the first half of 2003.

In the latter part of this statement I announce a strategic alliance with a
major trading partner, M Dohmen GmbH, which offers encouraging prospects for
future business development and improved financial performance for Yorkshire.

The Group continues to actively explore ways of reducing borrowings through a
realisation of value from its freehold property portfolio.


Trading results

Group turnover in the six month period to 30th June 2002 of £56.3m compares with
£65.9m in the first half of 2001 and £54.5m in the second half of 2001.

The operating loss of £1.8m before exceptional items compares with an operating
profit of £2.3m in the first half of 2001. The European business slipped from an
operating profit of £1.3m before exceptional items in the first half of 2001
into a loss of £2.9m, the same result as the second half of 2001.

Exceptional items of £2.9m includes £2.6m business rationalisation costs
relating to the restructuring of the European business, as commented upon in the
Finance Director's Review of the 2001 accounts.

The interest expense of £1.7m (2001 £1.5m) followed the increase in borrowings
by £14.7m in 2001.

Loss per ordinary share before exceptional items was 7.0p (2001 1.2p earnings
per ordinary share), and after exceptional items, 12.5p (2001 1.0p earnings per
ordinary share). The directors are not declaring an interim dividend.

Net assets of the Group at 30th June 2002 were £48.8m, being 93p per ordinary
share, with balance sheet gearing of 71%.


Europe

The new management team has commenced implementation of the restructuring plan,
anticipating that during the second half the scale of the task would render
further action necessary. The objective is for the restructuring benefits to be
substantially realised in 2003 having taken much of the appropriate action
during 2002.

The reorganisation of the UK manufacturing base announced in January 2002
continues to schedule, the objective being a highly efficient dyestuff
manufacturing plant at the Hunslet Road site in Leeds. From the end of the first
quarter of 2003 the full cost savings of around £3m per annum are anticipated as
manufacturing at the Kirkstall Road site in Leeds ceases.

In targeting the major markets of Germany and Italy, the sales office in France
has been closed. A new European central warehouse opened in northern Germany
during the first half of 2002 to replace facilities in Leeds, France and Germany
that are closing. This action is anticipated to result in lower costs, lower
stock levels and improved customer service.

The restructuring work being undertaken in the second half is expected to lead
to a further exceptional item arising at the year end. Annualised cost savings
of some £2m per annum are anticipated in 2003 in the areas of restructuring
other than the UK manufacturing initiative.

The objective for 2003 is a simpler, profitable, customer oriented business
concentrating upon a core range of products from a lower cost base and improved
stockturn.

Stock reduction was pursued both aggressively and successfully during the first
half with a full year's budgeted reduction of £3.6m achieved in six months. The
priority requirement of stock reduction leading to cash generation impacted
operating profits adversely and was the key contributor to a loss before
exceptional items of £2.9m in Europe.


Americas

The established US based management team reported turnover of £27.0m (2001
£30.9m) and an operating profit of £1.6m before exceptional items (2001 £1.6m).
Business conditions slowly improved during the first half, with new accounts
being won to offset the underlying structural decline in the textile based
dyestuffs business in US.

The division generated a positive cash flow in the period as stock levels
declined and earlier restructuring work was completed. The division is now well
placed to increase its market share in the domestic US market.


Asia Pacific

The Asia Pacific business continued its development as planned, despite the
residual impact from 2001 of the slowdown in the US. Turnover of £6.6m (2001
£6.6m) gave rise to an operating profit of  £0.1m (2001 £0.3m) as business
development costs were absorbed.

Asia Pacific is the major region of textile growth. The new Hong Kong based team
continues to expand from a small office and is developing new sales
opportunities. A sales and technical office was opened in Taiwan in the first
half, to complement the existing businesses in Korea and Indonesia with growth
potential.


Cash flow

Enhanced focus upon cash management and improved reporting systems introduced
during the first half enabled the Group to report net debt of £34.8m at 30th
June. In the first half, a net cash outflow of £1.4m was offset by a favourable
translation difference of the same amount arising on borrowings of $40.5m
following the weakening of the dollar by the period end.

Working capital was reduced by £5.1m in the first half assisted by a stock
reduction of £5.5m, and as anticipated provided the funds for committed
reorganisation and capital expenditure costs of £2.5m and £1.9m respectively.


Directors and employees

There have been further changes at Board level during 2002, including my own
appointment on 18th March.

Philip Howard and Rex Clark resigned as non-executive directors on 7th May.
Michael Greenhalgh retired from the Board as Business Development Director on
27th June.

The Board was pleased to welcome Cathy Baxandall to the Group as Company
Secretary with effect from 3rd June. Cathy, a qualified lawyer with
international business experience, was formerly Company Secretary of Thistle
Hotels plc.

The Board is delighted to announce the appointment on 2nd September of Dr
Albrecht Muller as a non-executive director. Dr Muller has extensive experience
of the worldwide textiles, dyestuffs and chemicals industry, primarily through a
career spent in senior management positions with the BASF Group.


Prospects

The unexpected downturn in trading witnessed in June also affected Europe in
July but not the Americas business that recovered quickly.

In the second half of 2002, the holiday months of August and December will
hamper progress in returning to profitability although increased factory
activity levels are anticipated. In the absence of deterioration in market
conditions, achieving Group profitability is the Board's objective for 2003.  In
this context 2002 is a transitional year.


Strategic alliance with M Dohmen GmbH ('Dohmen')

I am pleased to announce that the Group has entered into a strategic alliance
with Dohmen, a long-standing trading partner that both distributes and
manufactures specialist dyes and chemicals. The Group and Dohmen are
respectively the fourth and fifth largest dye suppliers globally.

Dohmen is acknowledged as one of the world's most innovative dyes marketing
companies, providing integrated solutions especially for automotive and
polyamide/wool applications. Based at Korschenbroich, near Dusseldorf in
Germany, with mixing and blending facilities in Switzerland and a manufacturing
facility in Korea, the Dohmen Group turnover was €82m (£54m) in 2001. Following
the acquisition, effective 1st September 2001, of the LG Chemicals business in
Korea, Dohmen Group turnover in 2002 is expected to be some €115m (£74m). The
Yorkshire Group turnover in 2001 was £120.4m.

The strategic alliance will concentrate on co-operation in the areas of
outsourcing and manufacturing with benefits expected to arise for Yorkshire from
2003 onwards. The outsourcing initiative is aimed at achieving economies of
scale through combined purchasing. The future strategy of both companies is to
enhance customer service.




Pat Barrett
Chairman

3rd September 2002



GROUP PROFIT AND LOSS ACCOUNT
for the half year ended 30th June 2002

                                                                              
                  Notes        Before  Exceptional     First   First    Full  
                          exceptional                  half     half     year 
                               items        items     2002     2001     2001 
                                                                              
                                  £m            £m       £m       £m       £m 
                                                                              
  Turnover            2         56.3             -     56.3     65.9    120.4 
                                                                              
  Cost of sales               (41.6)         (1.8)   (43.4)   (44.7)   (94.3) 
                                                                              
  Gross Profit                  14.7         (1.8)     12.9     21.2     26.1 
                                                                              
  Other                       (16.5)         (1.1)   (17.6)   (18.9)   (42.6) 
  operating                                                                   
  expenses                                                                    
                                                                              
  Operating         3,4        (1.8)         (2.9)    (4.7)      2.3   (16.5) 
  (loss)/profit                                                               
                                                                              
                                                                              
  Net interest                                        (1.7)    (1.5)    (3.0) 
                                                                              
  (Loss)/profit                                       (6.4)      0.8   (19.5) 
  on ordinary                                                                 
  activities                                                                  
  before                                                                      
  taxation                                                                    
                                                                              
  Tax on loss         5                               (0.1)    (0.2)    (1.4) 
  on ordinary                                                                 
  activities                                                                  
                                                                              
  (Loss)/profit                                       (6.5)      0.6   (20.9) 
  on ordinary                                                                 
  activities                                                                  
  after                                                                       
  taxation                                                                    
                                                                              
  Minority                                                -    (0.1)    (0.1) 
  interest -                                                                  
  equity                                                                      
                                                                              
  (Loss)/profit                                       (6.5)      0.5   (21.0) 
  for the                                                                     
  period                                                                      
                                                                              
  Dividends -                                             -        -        - 
  on equity                                                                   
  shares                                                                      
                                                                              
  Transfer                                            (6.5)      0.5   (21.0) 
  (from)/to                                                                   
  reserves                                                                    
                                                                              
  Basic &             6                                                       
  diluted                                                                     
  (loss)/earnings                                                              
  per ordinary                                                                    
  share                                                                       
                                                                              
  - before                                            (7.0)      1.2    (9.4) 
  exceptional                                                                 
  items                                                                       
  - exceptional                                       (5.5)    (0.2)   (30.8) 
  items less                                                                  
  attributable                                                                
  tax                                                                         
                                                                              
  Basic &                                            (12.5)      1.0   (40.2) 
  diluted                                                                     
  (loss)/earnings                                                              
  per ordinary                                                                    
  share                                                                       
                                                                              
  The results in both years                                                               
  relate to continuing                                                                  
  activities.                                                                 
 
 
 
GROUP BALANCE SHEET 
at 30th June 2002 
 
                                                                             
                                           30th June    30th June    31st Dec 
                                                2002         2001        2001 
                                                  £m           £m          £m 
  Fixed assets                                                                
  Intangible assets                                -          5.5           - 
  Tangible assets                               45.8         48.3        45.6 
                                                45.8         53.8        45.6 
                                                                              
                                                                              
  Current assets                                                              
  Stocks                                        37.3         54.3        43.3 
  Debtors                                       28.3         36.9        25.4 
  Cash at bank and in hand                       3.1          4.5         3.3 
                                                68.7         95.7        72.0 
  Current liabilities                                                         
  Creditors - amounts falling due             (27.4)       (46.0)      (26.5) 
  within one year                                                             
                                                                              
  Net current assets                            41.3         49.7        45.5 
                                                                              
  Total assets less current liabilities         87.1        103.5        91.1 
  Creditors-amounts falling due after                                         
  more than one year                          (31.9)       (14.4)      (30.3) 

  Provisions for liabilities and               (5.7)       (12.6)       (6.1) 
  charges                                                                     
                                                                              
  Net assets                                    49.5         76.5        54.7 
                                                                              
  Capital and reserves:                                                       
  Called up share capital                       13.1         13.1        13.1 
  Share premium account                         26.8         26.8        26.8 
  Revaluation reserve                            0.5          0.5         0.5 
  Capital redemption reserve                     0.3          0.3         0.3 
  Profit and loss account                        8.1         35.3        13.4 
                                                                              
  Equity shareholders' funds                    48.8         76.0        54.1 
  Equity minority interest                       0.7          0.5         0.6 
                                                                              
  Total capital employed                        49.5         76.5        54.7 
                                                                              

 
CONSOLIDATED CASH FLOW STATEMENT 
for the half year ended 30th June 2002 

                                                                              
                                        First half    First half    Full year 
                                              2002          2001         2001 
                               Note             £m            £m           £m 
                                                                              
  Net cash inflow/(outflow)       7            1.7         (1.4)          0.7 
  from operating activities                                                   
                                                                              
  Returns on investments                                                      
  and servicing of finance                                                    
  Interest received                              -           0.2          0.2 
  Interest paid                              (1.4)         (1.6)        (2.8) 
                                             (1.4)         (1.4)        (2.6) 
                                                                              
  Taxation                                                                    
  Taxation received                            0.2             -          1.2 
  Taxation paid                              (0.2)         (0.3)        (2.9) 

                                                 -         (0.3)        (1.7) 
  Capital expenditure and                                                     
  financial investment                                                        
  Purchase of tangible                       (1.9)         (4.0)        (8.7) 
  fixed assets                                                                
  Sale of tangible fixed                       0.1           0.1          0.2 
  assets                                                                      
                                             (1.8)         (3.9)        (8.5) 
                                                                              
  Acquisitions and                             0.1         (0.2)        (0.2) 
  disposals                                                                   
                                                                              
  Equity dividends paid                          -         (1.6)        (1.6) 
                                                                              
  Financing                                                                   
  New bank loans                               5.2           8.3         15.7 
  Repayment of loans                         (2.8)         (2.8)        (5.6)
 
                                               2.4           5.5         10.1 
                                                                              
  Increase/(decrease) in                       1.0         (3.3)        (3.8) 
  cash in the period                                                          
                                                                              
 
 
OTHER FINANCIAL STATEMENTS 
for the half year ended 30th June 2002 
 

                                                                              
                                        First half    First half    Full year 
                                              2002          2001         2001 
                                                £m            £m           £m 
  Statement of total recognised                                               
  gains and losses                                                            
                                                                              
  (Loss)/profit for the financial            (6.5)           0.5       (21.0) 
  period                                                                      
  Currency translation differences                                            
  on foreign currency                                                         
  net investments                              1.2           0.1        (0.3) 
                                                                              
  Total gains and losses recognised          (5.3)           0.6       (21.3) 
  in the period                                                               
                                                                              
  Historical cost profits                                                     
                                                                              
  There is no material difference                                             
  between historical cost profits                                             
  and those reported in the profit                                            
  and loss account.                                                           
                                                                              
  Reconciliation of movements in                                              
  shareholders' funds                                                         
                                                                              
  (Loss)/profit for the financial            (6.5)           0.5       (21.0) 
  period                                                                      
  Currency translation differences                                            
  on foreign currency                                                         
  net investments                              1.2           0.1        (0.3) 
                                                                              
  Net (decrease)/increase in                 (5.3)           0.6       (21.3) 
  shareholders' funds in the period                                           
  Opening shareholders' funds                 54.1          75.4         75.4 
                                                                              
  Closing shareholders' funds                 48.8          76.0         54.1 
                                                                              
 


NOTES TO THE INTERIM FINANCIAL STATEMENTS 
 
  1. Preparation of interim financial statements                              
                                                                              
  The interim financial statements, which have not been audited or reviewed   
  by the auditors, have been prepared on the basis of the accounting policies 
  set out in the Group's 2001 statutory accounts. The statements were         
  approved by the Board of Directors on 2nd September 2002. The financial     
  information set out above does not comprise statutory accounts within the   
  meaning of the Companies Act 1985.                                          
                                                                              
  The change in accounting policy for deferred tax had no impact on the Group 
  accounts due to the availability of surplus tax losses brought forward.     
 
                                                                        
  2. Turnover                                                     
  Turnover represents sales by Group companies to third parties.  
 

                                                                              
                                           First half    First half     Full  
                                                                         year 
                                                 2002           2001     2001 
                                                   £m             £m       £m 
  Geographical destination analysis of                                        
  Group turnover                                                              
  Continental Europe                             19.2           22.7     45.2 
  Asia                                            6.7            6.7     11.6 
  Australasia                                     0.6            0.7      1.3 
  North and South America                        27.2           31.8     53.8 
  Africa and the MIddle East                      0.9            1.7      3.9 
                                                 54.6           63.6    115.8 
  UK                                              1.7            2.3      4.6 
  Total turnover                                 56.3           65.9    120.4 
                                                                              
  Divisional analysis of Group turnover                                       
                                                                              
                                                                              
  Europe                                         22.7           28.4     51.0 
  Asia Pacific                                    6.6            6.6     12.6 
  Americas                                       27.0           30.9     56.8 
                                                 56.3           65.9    120.4 
 
 
3. Divisional analysis of Group operating (loss)/profit 
 

                                                                              
                            Before   Exceptional     First    First      Full
                       exceptional         items      half     half      year 
                             items                    2002     2001      2001 
                                                                              
                               £m             £m        £m       £m        £m 

  Europe                    (2.9)          (2.6)     (5.5)      1.3     (7.3) 
  Asia Pacific                0.1              -       0.1      0.3       0.4 
  Americas                    1.6          (0.1)       1.5      1.6     (2.0) 
  Group services            (0.6)          (0.2)     (0.8)    (0.8)     (2.1)
 
                            (1.8)          (2.9)     (4.7)      2.4    (11.0) 

  Amortisation                  -              -         -    (0.1)     (5.5) 
  and impairment                                                              
  review
                                                                      
  Operating                 (1.8)          (2.9)     (4.7)      2.3    (16.5) 
  (loss)/profit                                                               
 
 
4. Exceptional items 

                                                                              
                   Restructuring   Americas  Corporate  Total   First     Full
                        European                 costs  first    half     year 
                        business                         half    2001     2001              
                                                         2002                 
                              £m        £m         £m      £m     £m       £m 

  Fixed asset              (0.2)         -          -   (0.2)      -      3.3 
  write downs
                                                                 
  Impairment                   -         -          -       -      -      1.9 
  review
                                                                      
  Stock                      0.3         -          -     0.3      -      3.2 
  provisions
                                                                  
  Business                   1.7         -          -     1.7      -      0.9 
  rationalisation                                                             
  costs 
                                                                      
  Release of                   -         -          -       -      -    (0.8) 
  surplus                                                                     
  accrual
                                                                     
  Prepayments to               -         -          -       -      -      0.5 
  pension scheme
                                                              
  Charged as                 1.8         -          -     1.8      -      9.0 
  cost of sales 
                                                              
                                                                              
  Bad debt                     -         -          -       -      -      0.8 
  provisions 
                                                                 
  Business                   0.8       0.1        0.2     1.1      -      0.7 
  rationalisation                                                             
  costs  
                                                                     
  Intangible                   -         -          -       -      -      5.2 
  asset                                                                       
  impairment 
                                                                 
  Prepayments to               -         -          -       -      -      0.4 
  pension scheme
                                                              
  Charged as                 0.8       0.1        0.2     1.1      -      7.1 
  other                                                                       
  operating                                                                   
  expenses 
                                                                   
  Total                      2.6       0.1        0.2     2.9      -     16.1 
                                                                              
 
 
5. Tax on loss on ordinary activities 
                                                                              
                                                 First half    First    Full  
                                                                half     year 
                                                       2002     2001     2001 
                                                         £m       £m       £m 
  UK corporation tax                                                          
  Current tax on income for the period                    -        -        - 
  Adjustments in respect of prior periods                 -    (1.4)    (1.4) 
                                                          -    (1.4)    (1.4) 
  Overseas tax                                                                
  Current tax on income for the period                  0.1      1.6      1.8 
  Adjustments in respect of prior periods                 -        -      1.0 
                                                        0.1      1.6      2.8 
                                                                              
  Total tax charged                                     0.1      0.2      1.4 
                                                                              
  Charge in respect of exceptional items                  -      0.1        - 
  included above                                                              
 
 
                                                                              
6. Earnings per ordinary share                                              
  (Losses)/profits used in the earnings per share calculation are as follows: 
                                                                         
                                                                              
  (Loss)/profit for the financial year                (6.5)     0.5    (21.0) 
  Exceptional items (less attributable tax)             2.9     0.1      16.1 
  (Loss)/profit before exceptionals                   (3.6)     0.6     (4.9) 
                                                                              
  Weighted average number of shares                    52.3    52.3      52.3 
                                                                              
  Diluted earnings per share have been calculated                             
  for 2002 and 2001 under FRS 14 and no dilution                              
  arises in either period.                                                    
 
7. Reconciliation of operating (loss)/ profit to net cash in/(out)flow from
   operating activities 
 
                                                                             
                                        First half    First half    Full year 
                                              2002          2001         2001 
                                                £m            £m           £m 
                                                                              
  Operating (loss)/profit on                 (4.7)           2.3       (16.5) 
  ordinary activities before                                                  
  interest 
                                                                   
  Fundamental reorganisation costs           (2.5)         (1.9)        (9.2) 
  paid 
                                                                       
  Depreciation of tangible fixed               1.9           2.2          4.2 
  assets
                                                                      
  Amortisation of intangible assets              -           0.1          0.3 

  Impairment review                              -             -          7.1 

  Fixed asset writedown                      (0.2)             -          3.3 

  Prepayments to pension scheme                  -             -          0.9 

  Profit on sale of fixed assets                 -             -        (0.1) 

  Decrease / ( increase) in stock              5.5         (0.7)          5.9 

  (Increase)/decrease in debtors             (2.8)         (4.1)          3.6 

  Increase/(decrease) in creditors             2.4           0.7        (4.0) 

  Net increase in provisions                   2.1             -          5.2 
                                                                              
  Net cash in/(out)flow from                   1.7         (1.4)          0.7 
  operating activities     
                                                   
                                                                              
8. Reconcilation of net cash flow to movement in net debt 
 
                                                                             
                                        First half    First half    Full year 
                                              2002          2001         2001 
                                                £m            £m           £m 
                                                                              
  Increase/(decrease) in cash in the           1.0         (3.3)        (3.8) 
  period 
                                                                     
  Cash inflow from increase in debt          (2.4)         (5.5)       (10.1) 

  Change in net debt resulting from          (1.4)         (8.8)       (13.9) 
  cash flows    
                                                              
  Translation differences                      1.4         (2.2)        (0.8) 
                                                                              
  Movement in net debt in the period             -        (11.0)       (14.7) 
                                                                              
  Opening net debt                          (34.8)        (20.1)       (20.1) 
                                                                              
  Closing net debt                          (34.8)        (31.1)       (34.8) 
                                                                              
 
 
END  
 


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