While unable to render a reliable forecast of the results for the present year, Mr M. Wilks, chairman of the Rover Company, takes a confident view of the future, based on the benefits to come from the expansion programme, and on the latest cut in purchase tax.
The major part of the programme will be completed during the first part of 1963, but there will be a further big increase in the provision for depreciation and other standing charges to be met before the new factories can be put into full production. The cost of the scheme so far is reflected in a net rise of about £4,500,000 in fixed assets. This has entailed liquid resources being drawn down from some £6,700,000 to £1,100,000. In addition there were £2,500,000 of outstanding commitments at the end of the year, which have still to be financed. Temporary bank facilities will be used here to supplement internal resources.
As for last year, when pre-tax profits dropped by a fifth, turnover was only marginally below the record reached in the preceding year.