LONDON, Nov 20 (Reuters) - British defence technology company QinetiQ Group maintained its forecast for flat annual profit after a strong first half in its European business was offset by costs associated with a U.S. disposal.
Reporting half-year results, the last set under current chief executive Leo Quinn who leaves on Dec. 31, QinetiQ said it was on track to meet its guidance for flat profits excluding the impact of the sale of its U.S. services unit.
The company posted underlying pretax profit of 46 million pounds ($72 million) in the six months ended Sept. 30, up 7 percent on the same period last year.
"Despite challenging markets, the board's expectations for group performance in the current financial year are unchanged," Quinn said in a statement on Thursday.
QinetiQ has not yet made an announcement regarding who will replace Quinn on a permanent basis. Chief financial officer David Mellors is set to take over as acting CEO, after Quinn leaves for infrastructure firm Babcock. (1 US dollar = 0.6392 British pound) (Reporting by Sarah Young; editing by James Davey)