Year of new contracts sees revenues soar at Rolls-Royce
ENGINEERING firm Rolls-Royce is going from strength to strength thanks to a series of new multi-million-pound contracts.
The firm, which employs 4,000 people at its factory in Patchway, is being hailed as one of the success stories of British industry thanks to a set of record annual results. However, the news has come just a few weeks after the firm revealed it is making hundreds of people redundant at its factory in Anstey, near Coventry.
The firm has reported an increase in full-year profits for the tenth year in a row and said it has seen a growth in sales thanks to demand from airlines for more fuel-efficient engines, such as the Trent XWB for the new Airbus A350 aircraft. Rolls-Royce said revenues over the last 12 months increased nine per cent to £12.2 billion, with more than half coming from the servicing of its jet engines.
Underlying pre-tax profits, which does not take into account the cost of hedging foreign currencies, increased by an impressive 24 per cent. When financing costs are taken into account, pre-tax profits more than doubled from £1.1 billion in 2011 to £2.7 billion.
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Rolls-Royce has its headquarters in Derby. The business in Bristol is responsible for defence and marine.
Big contract wins over the last 12 months have included a $315 million deal in the US for the engines for the F-35B Lightning II aircraft. The engines were largely designed and developed in Bristol. There was also a £100 million contract extension to maintain engines for C-130 and VC-10 aircraft for the RAF.
The firm also won a contract with the US Navy to supply MT30 gas turbines and propulsion systems for the two latest vessels in its Littoral Combat Ship programme.
Tom Bell, the man in charge of the Bristol operation, said: "This has been another successful year for the defence business, despite the fact that our customers around the world continue to experience budgetary pressures. However, in a tough operating environment we must improve our levels of affordability to ensure we maximise the opportunities we have, both in our traditional markets and in expanding defence markets such as India, the Middle East and Asia."