Eco-Bat Technologies Reports 1st-Quarter Loss as Lead Sales Rise

Eco-Bat Technologies Ltd., the world’s largest producer of refined lead, had a loss of 2.9 million pounds ($4.9 million) in the first quarter compared with income of 4 million pounds for the same period last year.

Revenue rose 1.6 percent to 394.3 million pounds as lead sales jumped 12 percent to 202,500 metric tons in the three months ended March 31, Matlock, England-based Eco-Bat said in an e-mailed statement today. Silver sales also rose. Revenue was reduced 23.6 million pounds because of the pound’s strength against the dollar, euro and South African rand, it said.

Lead sales rose on increased business in the U.S. and South Africa, while Europe was still slow, Eco-Bat said. It said it bought an unidentified U.K. battery distributor on Feb. 7. Lead for delivery in three months averaged $2,124 a ton in the first quarter on the London Metal Exchange, down from $2,308 a ton in the first quarter last year. Silver prices averaged $20.47 an ounce, compared with $30 an ounce a year earlier.

(Eco-Bat will hold a conference call today at 3 p.m. U,K. time. The number is +44-20-8515-2336 or +0800-358-5271 within the U.K. A replay will be available for two weeks on +44-20-7959 6720 or +0800-358-9369 within the U.K., pin code 4685955#.)

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