Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Henlys Chief Will Hit the Road in America

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Henlys Chief Will Hit the Road in America

Article excerpt

Byline: ROBERT LEA

SHARES in Henlys, the Anglo-American bus builder, picked up from a six-year low today as chief executive Robert Wood pledged to take his North American growth message on a roadshow for US investors.

Former motor dealer Henlys has transformed itself into the world's third largest bus manufacturer.

Its shares have crashed 40% in only two months since it warned that the market for touring coaches in the struggling US economy had taken a turn for the worse.

However, there was relief that the headline pre-tax profits came in just short of original expectations at [pound]65 million - up 83% taking account for the first full year of the [pound]415 million Blue Bird acquisition in the US.

This and a strong message that most of its American operations should be immune from a downturn, sent the shares back up 13 1/2p to 293 1/2p.

Wood explained: "Blue Bird in the US is now Henlys' core business accounting for 81% of current operating profits. …

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