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Cape to Sell Two Australian Units to Revive Business in Region

Cape Plc, a supplier of scaffolding, fire protection and cleaners to energy companies, will sell two businesses in Australia as it tries to revive performance in the region.

The Singapore-based company, whose shares slumped in August when it said performance in Australia was “well below” expectations, will dispose of a hire and sales business and a blasting workshop facility, said Ben Simons, a spokesman for the company in London.

“Whilst successful profitable businesses, Cape believes they will develop more strongly under new ownership,” Simons said in an e-mail. “It is too early to comment on the potential proceeds, but Cape is not expecting that they will be material.”

Cape said in August that problems in its Asia-Pacific region will probably persist into next year. The company, which has a market capitalization of about 325 million pounds ($524 million), lost about 18 percent of its value this year.

The company said Aug. 30 that revenue grew 9.8 percent based on constant 2011 exchange rates to 371.6 million pounds in the first half. Adjusted profit before tax fell to 12 million pounds from 34 million pounds.

On Aug. 1, Cape had said the company was unlikely to meet prior expectations for the year and “challenging” conditions in Asia-Pacific would probably persist into 2013. That came about two months after Cape took a 14 million-pound charge from the Arzew liquefied natural-gas project in Algeria.

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