But materials firm reports strong start to 2010 and reveals plans to open 18 new branches

Construction materials supplier BSS has reported full-year profits of £44.2m on flat revenues of £1.35bn.

The company said the profits, which were down 24% on the 2009 number, were achieved during the “toughest year for the economy in more 70 years.”

However, the firm said revenues in the second half of the year rose by 7% on the previous year, and that trading so far in the new financial year had got off to a “strong start,” up 9.7% on the previous year.

Gavn Slark

It’s confidence in the returning market enabled it to open 18 branches over the year and increase the shareholder dividend by 10% on the back of continued repair and maintenance activity.

Gavin Slark, group chief executive, said: “We are in the positive situation that around 90% of our revenue is not reliant on Government capital expenditure and with the significant progress that we are making in areas such as spares, drainage, renewables and the water industry, coupled with an early cycle recovery in house building, the BSS Group is exceptionally well positioned to achieve profitable growth in the years to come.