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Computacenter expects sales growth slump in second half

But profits leap 60% in H1

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Computacenter saw profits jump 60 per cent for the first half of 2001, but warned that figures were likely to remain flat for the full year.

The UK PC reseller said today pre-tax profit before exceptionals was £34 million for the six months ended June 30 2001. This compared to £21.2 million for the same period the previous year.

Sales grew 27 per cent to £1.2 billion.

The company said trading conditions worsened as the six months progressed and the sales slowdown seen in the US hit Europe. Sales of Unix systems were particularly affected due to the downturn in e-commerce investment.

Computacenter CEO Mike Norris said the UK - which accounts for around 85 per cent of the company's sales - was hit harder than the rest of Europe in the second quarter.

Regarding its distribution businesses, CCD had a strong first half with sales topping £150 million, while sales of Metrologie (which Computacenter acquired in 1999) were also "particularly pleasing".

According to a statement to the stock exchange, trading conditions since June have been similar to those of the second quarter.

The company said this made it difficult to predict profit figures for the second half of the year. But if trading continues at current levels, Computacenter expects pre-tax profit to remain flat for the full year 2001 - at around £56 million. ®

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