Turnover hits £3.14bn as housebuilder concludes successful integration of Westbury Homes into business

The successful integration of Westbury Homes has helped boost Persimmon pre-tax profit to a record £582.1m.

Completions at the housebuilder increased by 32% to 16,701 homes for the year ended 31 December 2006, while turnover was up 37% to £3.14bn. Average selling price increased by 4% to £188,129.

John White
Whtie: "2006 was an exceptional year for Persimmon."

The healthy set of results enabled Persimmon to increase final dividend by 72% to 32.7p.

Commenting on the results group chairman John White said: “2006 was an exceptional year for Persimmon. During the year we completed the acquisition of Westbury, achieved record profit, increased our land bank, while reducing debt ahead of our original projections."

Persimmon said forward sales were ahead of 2006 levels at £1.3bn, and claimed that 120 new outlets would open in the next six months. The land bank increased to 80,085 plots.

Persimmon said that cancellations fell last year to 15%, which it said reflected a healthy and competitive market with stable prospects.

The integration of Westbury had resulted in synergy savings of £32m, ahead of expectations, and Persimmon said it expected further savings due to the size of the bigger business.

The results raised a cheer in the city where shares rose 22p, or 1.5%, this morning to 1445p.