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Interserve profits dip in first half

Interserve, the international services, maintenance and building group, has reported first half pre-tax profits down to £27.3million against £40million in the same period in 2009.
Revenue totalled £944.5million, down from £951.2million in the same period last year and gross profit dropped to £82.4million from £106million.

Operating profit was down by more than half to £14.5million from £30.4million.

Total operating profit dropped from £43.7million in the corresponding period in 2009 to £29.1million.

The interim dividend has been raised to 5.6p from 5.5p.

'Trading in the half-year was in line with the Board's expectations,' said Adrian Ringrose, chief executive.

'Project Services delivered an excellent result, Support Services is making good progress based on moving performance in several key public sector contracts to planned levels of profitability and Equipment Services, after an exceptional 2009, performed creditably in a challenging environment.'

According to the company, margin recovery in Support Services and growth from the international markets will generate improved second-half earnings and sustain long-term growth, supported by a future workload of £5.7billion.

Around half of the group profits currently come from outside the UK. It expects this overseas contribution to remain significant and to grow.

'Uncertainties persist in our markets, but we remain confident that the second half will show a significant uplift on the first half and that we have a strong international platform from which to sustain long-term growth at attractive margins. Consequently, the board is continuing with its progressive dividend policy,' added Ringrose.
12 August 2010

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