Profit at waste management firm Shanks grows 24% as it eyes up massive council waste treatment contracts.

Waste management company Shanks is feeling the financial boost from the sale of its UK landfill operations, announcing a 24% headline profit in its interim results for the six months to 30 September.

The sale of the landfill division caused a drop in turnover from £293 million to £270 million, but an increase in profit to £54.4 million before tax.

With the Landfill Directive and Landfill Tax continuing to impact on the market, Shanks hopes that its expertise in landfill diversion will mean it is in an ideal position to benefit from new opportunities as they emerge.

Within the UK, the Group reports that its two PFI contracts – for Argyll & Bute and the East London Waste Authority – are performing as planned.

The composting plant in Argyll & Bute has begun operations, with mechanical, biological treatments plants for the London authority scheduled to be operational by summer 2006.

Shanks says that the technology, developed with its Italian partner, Ecodeco, is: “proving extremely interesting to UK local authority customers.”

It predicts that contracts to dispose of some 10 million tonnes of annual waste will be tendered in the next five years. The statement concludes that “ as Shanks has sole rights UK rights to this technology it is well-placed to compete for this growing opportunity.”