The acquisition of housebuilder Fairclough by Miller Group seems to have paid off, as it boosted interim pre-tax profit 29%.

Miller made a £36m pre-tax profit in the six months to 30 June. Fairclough helped to boost sales 67% to 1776 units.

Keith Miller, the group chief executive, said: “The commercial property business has done pretty well, doubling its profits.” Profit within the property business doubled to £10.2m on the back of a recovery in the commercial market both in investment terms and occupation.

In construction, operating profit rose 6% to £1.7m from £1.6m and it has a construction order book of £330m.

Miller was upbeat about prospects. He said: “Construction has never been busier, it’s in great shape. Traditionally the first half is never startling, it’s usually second-half biased.”

Miller would not be drawn on any specific acquisition plans but did say: “We are looking at things all the time. We do want to grow this business.”