Bodycote posts higher profit for first half

July 26 Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:40am EDT

July 26 (Reuters) - British engineering company Bodycote Plc said first-half profit rose nearly 9 percent helped by strong growth in its aerospace business and higher demand from the North American auto market.

Bodycote, which heat-treats jet engine turbine blades and other parts for car and plane makers, said pretax profit rose to 43.8 million pounds ($67.77 million) for January-June from 40.3 million pounds a year earlier.

Revenue at the company, which also serves the mining, energy and construction markets, rose nearly 5 percent to 301.3 million pounds.

While new orders have been subdued, planemakers like Boeing Co and Airbus are scrambling to fulfil an order backlog stretching over six years, benefitting companies servicing the industry.

The auto market, however, has been a mixed bag with U.S. new auto sales on track to score their best year since 2007 while European car sales are reeling from the continent's protracted debt crisis.