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Mon June 14 2021

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TClarke profits under pressure

6 Aug 13 Careful contract selection has helped building services group TClarke produce a slight improvement in profitability for the first half of the year.

Chief executive Mark Lawrence
Chief executive Mark Lawrence

For the six months to 30 June 2013, TClarke made an £800,000 pre-tax profit on £114.7m revenue. This compares to £500,000 from £90.7m revenue for the same period last year.

The pre-tax profit margin improved from 0.5% to 0.7%, although the underlying operating margin reduced from 1.7% to 1%.

The company said that it was “frustrating” that opportunities were taking longer to convert into firm orders.

Chief executive Mark Lawrence said: "The group has performed well, delivering a profitable half year, despite the continuing challenges in our markets. The forward order book has been maintained at £225m and we have improved the visibility of our workload, with some projects extending into 2015 and beyond.

“Competition remains fierce, yet we remain focused on choosing carefully which projects we tender for. Our cash position is solid and we ended the half year with an increased balance of £7.8m.

“Looking forward, there are signs of increased client activity especially in London, although this has yet to translate into improved margins."

TClarke operates from three regional bases, South, North and Scotland. Revenue from the South was up strongly to £91.3m (2012: £60.7m) but last year’s £200,000 half-year profit was wiped out this time and the business only broke even.

TClarke Scotland also only managed to break even, on reduced revenue of £6.4m (2012: £6.8m).

Revenue in the North decreased by £6.2m to £17.0m (2012: £23.2m), but operating profit increased from £600,000 last time to £900,000.

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