BL falls £11m into red after Jaguar sell-off
By Ian Griffiths
BL, the state-owned car group. plunged into red in the first half of the year.
Its operating loss of £11.3 million wiped out the profits of £17.9 million it made at the same stage a year ago. However, the figures are distorted by the absence of profits from Jaguar, which had made an operating profit of nearly £45 million in the first half of 1984 and was sold to the private sector in August last year. If Jaguar had been excluded from the 1984 figures BL would have made a £26.9 million loss, rather than its £17.9 million profit. Although BL had the benefit of the use of the £186 million it raised from the sale of Jaguar the company still lost £44,8 million after all deductions, up from £34.9 million in the first six months of this year.
Despite strong sales in July and August. BL remains cautious about the prospects for the rest of the year.
The 800 workers on the No 1 Metro assembly line at Austin Rover’s Longbridge plant were given two hours off yesterday to celebrate the 10 millionth car produced at Herbert Austin-s former factory near Birmingham. They watched a factory floor performance by nine Bluebell Girls from the Lido night club in Paris.