At today's Annual General Meeting of Modern Water Plc, the owner of leading technologies for water and wastewater treatment and for the monitoring of water quality, Alan Wilson, Non-Executive Chairman, will make the following statement: "Modern Water has started 2018 strongly with Group revenue in the first-quarter 37% higher than in the same period last year. Both Divisions are performing well, with China the primary driver for the Monitoring Division and the Advance Works Contract for the Gibraltar waste-water treatment plant boosting the Membrane Division. Gross profit in the first quarter was 40% higher than 2017 and Group overhead was 8% lower than the same period last year. The Group's cash position as of 20thof April 2018, stood at £343,000 and the finance facility ($600,000) secured on Modern Water Inc's receivables remained un-utilised.
Management is confident that the strategic decision to terminate the contract of our sole Chinese distributor and pursue a multi-channel sales approach in one of our most important markets, was correct and first-quarter financial results clearly support that. We expect further progress in the remainder of 2018 and for the Monitoring Division is expected to return to EBITDA breakeven for the year. In the Membrane Division, our principal process engineer is currently on site in India overseeing the final commissioning of our first full-scale All Membrane Brine Concentrator (AMBC). Two further paid-for trials with other industrial customers have been successful. We are also well-positioned in China and our first AMBC project is due to be commissioned shortly. With reference AMBC plants operational in both our key markets, we expect to see an acceleration of licence sales for this product during 2018. The Gibraltar Advance Works Contract is progressing well and we remain committed to helping HM Government of Gibraltar to achieve its goal of completing the Waste Water Treatment Plant in 2020."