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Thursday 23 April, 2020


Trading & COVID-19 Update

RNS Number : 5656K
23 April 2020

SDI Group plc


( " SDI " , the " Company " or the " Group " )



Trading Update

COVID-19 Update


SDI Group plc, the AIM quoted Group focused on the design and manufacture of scientific and technology products for use in digital imaging and sensing control applications, is pleased to announce an update on trading for the year ending 30 April 2020, and on the impact of COVID-19 on SDI's operations.


The Group has a diversified portfolio of companies and since the announcement of a UK " lockdown " on 23 March has continued to operate at all eight of its operating units. The Group continues to expect to meet market profit expectations for the year ending 30 April 2020, with sales of around £24 million.


During the period, the Company has taken steps in order to:

- protect the health and wellbeing of our employees;

- reduce business costs as appropriate making use of US and UK Government programmes, whilst still maintaining our capabilities in the short and the long term;

- conserve cash and liquidity;

- support customers in medical and scientific areas that require critical products for the national interest and for the global effort against COVID-19.



We have taken all necessary steps to protect the health of our employees, clients and suppliers. Protocols have been introduced in the workplace and, where possible, staff are now working from home. The Board is extremely proud of the way the Group ' s employees have reacted to the crisis and is grateful to them and their families.


Reducing Costs

Since 23 March, the Group has been actively reducing SDI ' s overall costs. These include a cut in all SDI board salaries and fees of 33% for a period of three months. The Group has also, where required, furloughed staff with Government support, ensuring the retention of our staff for the future. 19% of SDI staff are currently furloughed and no staff members have been made redundant.


Cash and Liquidity

SDI has a strong balance sheet with current cash in excess of £4.5m, unused debt facilities of £0.6m and bank debt of £8.9m. The Group has a good long-term relationship with its bank and has agreed, as a precautionary measure, a capital repayment holiday of three months of its revolving credit facility. The Group has also taken advantage of the UK Government's scheme allowing a temporary VAT payment deferral.


Current Trading and Outlook

The Board expects SDI to report profit for the year to 30 April 2020 in line with market expectations.


However due to COVID-19 SDI withdraws market guidance for the year to 30 April 2021. There has been some disruption to supply and some slow-down in orders, but SDI currently has all factories in operation and has so far remained both profitable and cash generative. At least four of our production units are providing their customers with components for medical and scientific products used in the fight against COVID-19.


Ken Ford, Chairman of SDI, said:

"The Group expects to report profit for the year to 30 April 2020 in line with market expectations. The Group remains open for business, although due to COVID-19, sales are at reduced levels. Demand for some SDI products has increased and the Group looks forward to being able to grow both organically and through acquisition during the new financial year when conditions permit ."



The Group currently expects to announce final results for the year ended 30 April 2020 in July 2020.



SDI Group plc   01223 320480

Ken Ford, Chairman

Mike Creedon, CEO

Jon Abell, CFO


finnCap Ltd  020 7220 0500

Ed Frisby/Kate Bannatyne - Corporate Finance

Andrew Burdis/Sunila de Silva - ECM


JW Communications  07818 430 877

Julia Wilson - Investor & Public Relations


About SDI Group plc:

SDI designs and manufactures scientific and technology products for use in digital imaging and sensing and control applications including life sciences, healthcare, astronomy, manufacturing, precision optics and art conservation. SDI operates through its company divisions: Atik Cameras, Synoptics, Graticules Optics, Sentek, Astles Control Systems, Applied Thermal Control, MPB Industries and Chell Instruments.


SDI continues to grow by developing its own technology advancements and by improving its global sales channels, as well as through pursuing strategic, complementary acquisitions.



This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of Regulation (EU) No 596/2014.

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