This excerpt taken from the ICI 6-K filed Mar 21, 2007.
Business review strategy continued
Overall, comparable sales growth for continuing businesses which ICI intends to grow aggressively was over 10% in 2006. Capital expenditure for these operations was in excess of depreciation as the businesses made further investments in growth opportunities. Paints and National Starch commissioned a joint facility in Shanghai to manufacture a range of specialty resins and polymers for adhesive and coating products. In addition, ICI began construction of a new technology centre in Shanghai and ICI Paints invested in new manufacturing projects in China and Vietnam. Product innovation was once again a strong driver of new business and the Group maintained its investments in research and development (R&D), as well as applications engineering, to support growth.
Both ICI Paints and National Starch made good progress in the key developing economies of Asia with full year comparable growth of 16% for the Decorative Paint business and 13% for National Starch. As a result, together with the impact of divestments, reported sales in Asia were 27% (2005 24%) of the Group total.
At the same time as investing in grow businesses ICI sustained its focus on restructuring, principally benefiting its maintain activities. Cumulative savings from the programme launched in 2003 reached £122m. In May, the Group launched a major new programme that will take the Group through to 2011, expected to deliver gross cost savings of some £170m per annum from a net cash investment of around £340m.