September 2, 2008

Goodwin Strikes Gold in Brazil


Engineering group Goodwin has unveiled profits of almost pounds10 million on the back of rising oil costs and spiralling demand for energy in China and India.

In the year to the end of April the Stoke-on-Trent manufacturer made pre-tax profits of pounds9.82 million - up from pounds7.04 million the year before.

Now the group has formed a joint venture with a Brazilian industrial minerals company and the new outfit - named Goldstar Brazil - is building a plant just north of Sao Paolo.

The Hanley-based group makes components used across a range of sectors including energy production, bridge-building and engineering as well as radar equipment.

It also has an industrial minerals division based in Newcastle and an internet service provider at Keele.

Other Goodwin firms are based in Thailand, Korea, China and India.

The Brazilian deal means Goodwin can now bypass crippling import tariffs and tap into the rapidly-expanding South American market.

Chairman John Goodwin said: "We have a 51 per cent share in the joint venture and in 2007 the turnover of the original company was pounds800,000.

"We will be looking to improve on that dramatically.

"In the past it has been difficult for us because of the duties.

"The good thing is this is a venture with someone who has got a whole, established, existing business over there."

The group's turnover surged from pounds66.1 million the previous year to pounds80.6 million in the 12 months to the end of April.

Part of this was down to the number of new power stations being built in China and India to service the expanding economies there.

Mr Goodwin praised employees - including the 600 who work at the Leek Road headquarters.

He said: "They have made a phenomenal contribution and worked unbelievable hours when they probably could have done with a rest.

"We get some of our orders because we are able to supply the products very quickly and that enables us to get premium payments and the only way we can do that is if people go the extra mile.

"That's exactly what they have done and it has been fantastic."

Sales from SRS, the company Goodwin bought for pounds6 million in June, will be included in the current year's results.

Many of the power stations supplied by Goodwin burn fossil fuels, and the firm expects to reap rewards as energy producers try to reduce greenhouse gases.

Mr Goodwin said: "By 2020, using the cast components produced by Goodwin could potentially contribute to delivering power generation efficiency resulting in a reduction of 800 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions a year in China and India, based on these countries' anticipated output.

"Our business is starting to supply other major fossil fuel power generators who wish to improve their efficiency by operating at higher temperatures with high temperature alloys.

"We also have current orders for items to be used in nuclear power generation facilities."

Commentators said Goodwin's latest figures were impressive.

Richard Farmiloe, investment manager at Hanley stockbroker Brewin Dolphin, said: "This is another stellar set of results form Goodwin."

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