Infrastructure and facilities management group Interserve is back in the black after a loss-making 2003.

The group announced a pre-tax profit for 2004 of £36m. In the previous 12 months it made a pre-tax loss of £2.9m, after closure of underperforming businesses cost Interserve nearly £25m.

Turnover was up 4.7% to £1.27bn, and the company’s dividend payout increased 4.4% to 14.1p.

Chief executive Adrian Ringrose said the results bode well for 2005. He said: “With future workload up 14% at £4.9bn and our consistently high client retention levels, the group is in a strong position to deliver growth in 2005 and beyond.”

In his annual review, Ringrose pointed out that the group had been particularly successful in the health sector. Interserve has won around 20% of the schemes assigned under the ProCure 21framework programmes, representing more than £100m of work.

During 2004 the group was also selected by the Home Office for its new build prison framework programme in England and Wales.

The company’s board is also about to receive a makeover. Senior independent director John Padovan will stand for re-election in March, but proposes to stand down in September. He has been with Interserve nine years. Patrick Balfour will replace him.