Porvair rakes in a cool £128m – and says Brexit is not a key concern

L-R: Ben Stocks, Polvair chief executive, Chris Tyler, finance director. Picture: Polvair

L-R: Ben Stocks, Polvair chief executive, Chris Tyler, finance director. Picture: Polvair - Credit: Polvair

Specialist filtration company Porvair has reported a staggering 2018, with end-of-year revenue up 11pc to £128.8m.

The business runs across three divisions: aerospace and industrial filtration, laboratory analytics, and metal melt quality.

Growth in each of these sectors, as well as through investment, has led the company to have a record profit before tax figure of £12m.

Ben Stocks, chief executive, said: 'The group has started 2019 with a healthy order book and is trading well.

'The acquisitions made during the year have expanded the group's capabilities in industrial and laboratory markets and are performing as expected.'

Such acquisitions include the purchase of Keystone Filter and Rohasys BV, as well as improving facilities across the US and domestically.

These totalled spending of £13.5m, up from £11.4m in 2017.

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Of the King's Lynn-based group's activities, 50pc are in the US, where Porvair employs more than 450 people, around half its workforce.

Despite having facilities across mainland Europe and further afield, Mr Stocks said that Porvair would continue operating out of Norfolk.

'We have good access to London airports and Schiphol through Norwich Airport,' he said. 'As a registered company there are times we have to go to London having floated in 2000, but the rail links are good.

'This is where we've been founded and will continue to operate out of.'

He added: 'We have a Brexit contingency plan like many businesses do, and will stockpile products if necessary. But, it's not a key concern for us in the same was the US/China trade negotiations are.'

Chris Tyler, the group's finance director, said: 'Despite being a B2B company our demand has been driven by consumer trends once you dig down into it.

'In the aerospace industry we're seeing more air miles, and that's a trend which doesn't appear to be slowing.

'In the metal melt quality, we're seeing a more eco-friendly push with people wanting to use recycled aluminium instead of steel on their cars.'

The company, based at the North Lynn Industrial Estate, employs around 900 people globally.

Of the three divisions, metal melt quality operations saw the largest growth of 37pc, followed by aerospace and industrial's growth of 18pc – which brought in the highest operating profit of £7.7m.

Laboratory testing saw growth of 4pc, with operating profit at £6.2m.