HBG Chief executive Brian May was bullish about the group's prospects desipite the weakening of the construction market.
May said the company intended to sharpen its focus on the health and education sectors. He added that it had reached financial close on three PFI projects in which it would continue to be involved after construction was completed.

The facilities management arm would grow to bolster the firm's PFI firepower, but would continue to focus on non-PFI public sector work.

May said that the group turnover had been reduced by 7% to £654.4m from £706.3m in 2002, reflecting the realignment of the business away from the commercial market.

However, he added that he did not believe the commercial slowdown would affect core business in the short term.

HBG reported that pre-tax profits were up 3% to £14.8m, from £14.3m for the year ending December 2002.

HBG also said there had been a 30% reduction in accidents on its sites over the last year.