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Henry Boot back in the black

26 Aug 10 Henry Boot has returned to profitability for the six months ending 30 June 2010.

Henry Boot has returned to profitability for the six months ending 30 June 2010.

Pre-tax profit was £9m, compared to a loss of £20.3m a year ago.

Revenue was down at £55.1m (H1 2009: £67m).

Construction represented the lion's share of revenue with £43.2m, down a fraction on the £43.9m posted a year ago. Its operating profit was £3.51m (H1 2009: £4.53m).

The firm won two “major” contracts for the Eastland Homes Partnership in Manchester and North Lincolnshire Homes, plus the first new-build council house scheme in Sheffield for over 20 years.

It has also been appointed to the Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust framework and is working on three schemes at the Northern General Hospital.

Chairman John Reis said the firm's construction division continued to perform well.

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“Henry Boot Construction carried a strong order book into 2010 and activity levels have remained high in the first half of this year,” he said.

“However, like others in the sector, we anticipate a further reduction in public sector opportunities following the Comprehensive Spending Review in October 2010 so we focused on continuing to increase our private sector client base.

“As part of this drive we have carried out building works for Symphony Kitchens, British Land, Veolia, Outokumpu, Betafence, Corus, Valbruna and for our sister company, Henry Boot Developments.”

Summaring the outlook, he added: “Whilst current trading remains reasonably robust we are very mindful that the well publicised spending cuts will have an impact on the level of work being put to the market as a whole. We have acted quickly to reduce our cost base and are confident that we can trade through these anticipated challenges satisfactorily.

“Overall the Group continues to trade in line with the Board's expectations for the year ending 31 December 2010. Our debt level remains low and we retain a significant number of land and development opportunities which remain capable of generating excellent profits as markets improve.”

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