January 23, 2017 / 7:52 AM / 3 years ago

Essentra sees full-year operating profit near lower end of forecast

(Reuters) - Essentra Plc (ESNT.L), a supplier of speciality plastic and packaging components, warned that full-year adjusted operating profit would miss or could come in at the lower end of its forecast, citing challenging business conditions in health and personal care packaging unit.

The company's stock fell as much as 12.5 percent to 387 pence, before reversing some of the losses, making it one of the worst performers on the FTSE mid cap index .FTMC.

Essentra said on Monday it expected adjusted operating profit to be at, or modestly below, the lower end of its guidance range of 137 million-142 million pounds ($169.3 million-$177 million) for the year ended Dec. 31, 2016.

The company, which has warned multiple times of a challenging 2016 and cut its full-year profit guidance in November, has lost more than 45 percent in share value over the last twelve months.

In November, the company said its integrated sites in health and personal care packaging in the United States and the UK did not see the expected rate of month-on-month growth in revenue and operating profit.

The health and personal care packaging unit saw a further significant decline in revenue and profitability in the last two months of 2016, Essentra said on Monday, adding a near-term improvement was not expected.

The unit brought in about 36 percent of its 2015 total revenue.

Essentra, whose filter products are used in tobacco, health and personal care and consumer goods, also said on Monday that Chief Executive Paul Forman, who joined the group on Jan. 1, has commenced a strategic review of the company.

(This story corrects last paragraph to say Paul Forman started as CEO on Jan. 1, not October)

Reporting by Rahul B in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri

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