STAMFORD, CONN.—Hexcel Corp.'s quarter-to-quarter improvements in profit, gross margins and adjusted earnings reflect a ``positive momentum in operating performance,'' Hexcel Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John J. Lee said in a recent news release.
Backlog for composite materials for Hexcel's biggest market, commercial aerospace, rose to $234.1 million from $194.6 million.
Stamford-based Hexcel said it has completed its business consolidation program with the exception of customer service. Hexcel consolidated special process honeycomb manufacturing from four plants to two, and transferred prepreg production in a plant in Belgium to other Hexcel operations.
Hexcel expects to cease manufacturing operations at the former Ciba composites facility in Anaheim, Calif., during 1997's third quarter, slightly ahead of schedule.
Hexcel reported profit of $8.2 million on sales of $214 million for the first quarter ending March 30 and profit of $2.3 million on sales of $212.5 million for the quarter ending Dec. 31.
Acquisitions skew the comparability of 1996's first-quarter profit of $1.8 million on sales of $126.4 million.