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Baker profits up.

Clothing and accessories retailer Ted Baker yesterday said it had seen an "encouraging" reaction to its spring and summer ranges, as it reported a 9.2% lift in annual profits.

The designer brand said profits for the year to January 27 increased to pounds 20m, while sales in the first seven weeks of the year grew 12.1%. Sales in the UK and Europe grew 9.2% to hit pounds 80m in 2006, helped by the addition of 12 new department store concessions and a new store in Bath. Stores, at Gatwick North and Brighton, are planned for 2007.

Second warning

CAKE maker Inter Link Foods issued a profits warning for the second time in a month after revealing further pressure on sales and margins.

The Blackburn-based firm, which supplies the major retailers with own-label products, expects to make an underlying loss in the year to the end of April. Inter Link said its fruit loaf brand Soreen remained on course for a successful year.

Soaring Comet

TRADING profits at the Comet chain grew by 20.4% during the year, from pounds 38.3m to pounds 46.1m.

Across the group, which is Europe's third largest electrical retailing chain, revenues were up 9.8% to pounds 4.5bn for the year.

Chief executive Jean-Noel Labroue said the current success had prompted the group to accelerate investment but warned that this would impact earnings growth during the year.

Military contracts

INDUSTRIAL group Smiths said it had won five contracts to supply chemical detection equipment to the US military.

The award of the work, worth pounds 19.5m, came as Smiths reported a 7% increase in half-year operating profits to pounds 148m.

The biggest contract award is worth pounds 9.9m and involves the supply of 4,100 units that can quickly monitor for nerve and blister agents.

One of the strongest areas of growth came from its detection arm, which boosted operating profits by 16% to pounds 27m.
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Article Type:Financial report
Date:Mar 22, 2007
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