Group EBIT for the period amounted to CHF13.1 million, down 40% from the first six months of 2010.

The results for each of the company's key markets are reported below.

Wind energy

In its biggest business, wind energy, Gurit saw its sales increase in the first six months of 2011, supported by rising core material volumes despite the Chinese market stagnating after years of significant growth.

Sales to India developed dynamically, but In Europe volumes were impacted by the temporary plant closure of a key customer.

In the American markets, the company saw prepreg sales start to increase noticeably and Gurit believes this trend should continue during the remainder of 2011.

Gurit closed the first half of 2011 with 21.4% higher sales of CHF90.1 million than for the same period of 2010.

Tooling

Compared with the first six months of 2010, which included a record high second quarter, Tooling business sales for the first half of 2011 were down 32.8% to CHF18.7 million.

Gurit reports the Chinese market for wind turbine blade moulds recovered significantly from the two preceding quarters and the outlook for the second half of the year is also much more positive than a year ago.

The company says the export of moulds to India and to a lesser extent to USA and Europe continues to develop.

Transportation

In the first half of 2011, Gurit saw a sales increase in its transportation business of 5.5% to reach CHF28.1 million.

Gurit notes that its automotive business witnessed volatile sales during the first four months of the year but is now performing to plan. The automotive production facility is currently being expanded and expected to be well utilised going forward based on a contract secured earlier in the year.

Marine 

The Gurit marine business saw sales fall 6.4% to CHF25.6 million for the first half of 2011compared to the same period of 2010.

According to Gurit, the marine business continued to recover gradually in Europe and the USA and recorded higher sales in Asia. It reports that the strong Australian Dollar practically led to a production halt in the marine industries of Australia and New Zealand.

Gurit, headquartered in Switzerland, specialises in the development and manufacture of advanced composite materials and related technologies. Its product range includes prepregs, core materials, gel-coats, adhesives, resins and consumables as well as certain finished parts.