Multidisciplinary firm High-Point Rendel is actively looking for an acquisition to boost the business and management consultancy side of its activities.

The firms believes it can maximise its margin by offering advice on procurement strategy, leadership and troubleshooting.

Financial director Stephen Greenwood said: "We're looking for anything to help us build on our multidisciplinary strategy, principally in the UK." Greenwood said he was delighted with the group's pre-tax profit figure of £912 000, up from £759 000 in 1998, an increase of 20%.

The figures for the past six months also show operating profit up from £836 000 to £948 000. The company said it would be making its first dividend payment to shareholders for four years after several years of difficult trading. Shareholders are to get 0.5p a share on 12 May.

Greenwood hopes the share price will increase in the wake of the dividend payment. It now stands at 39p.

He said: "We feel the company's share price is undervalued."