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23 April, 2020 - 09:09 By Tony Quested

SDI board set example with 33 per cent pay cut

All board members at Cambridge UK technology business SDI Group plc have agreed a 33 per cent cut in salaries and fees for a period of three months. The AIM-quoted group has also furloughed 19 per cent of staff in a further move to combat the impact of the coronavirus epidemic.

Focused on the design and manufacture of scientific and technology products for use in digital imaging and sensing control applications, SDI revealed the moves in a trading update for the year ending April 30, 2020.
The company reveals that it has been actively reducing SDI’s overall costs since mid-March and ensuring it retains a strong balance sheet.

Chairman Ken Ford said the company had current cash of more than £4.5 million, unused debt facilities of £0.6m and bank debt of £8.9m. 

He said SDI 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 Government’s scheme allowing a temporary VAT payment deferral.

The board expects SDI to report profit for the year in line with market expectations but due to COVID-19 SDI withdraws market guidance for the year to April 30, 2021. 

The company says 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 its production units are providing customers with components for medical and scientific products used in the fight against COVID-19. 

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

Ken Ford said: “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.”

As things stand, SDI expects to announce final results for the year in July.

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