Consultant White Young Green is predicting strong growth next year as it looks ahead to further acquisitions and waits to reap the full benefits of this year’s purchases.
In results announced this week, turnover at WYG has risen 16% to £168m for the year ended 30 June and pre-tax profit has increased 18%.
However, the consultant expects growth to increase further in 2007 as its recent acquisitions are integrated more effectively. Of the five firms it bought in 2005 and 2006, three were in the final third of this year.
John Purvis, the firm’s chief executive, also suggested that these buys would not be the last. He said: “Acquisitions always play an important part in the development of new areas and territories. I would be surprised if no further purchases were made by us in 2007.”
Elsewhere in the results, adjusted earnings per share were on a par to last year’s. They were 20p this year and 17p last year. The order book is also at a record high this year, standing at £310m compared with £253m in 2005.
But Purvis added that there were areas that needed more attention, and WYG would now be concentrating on these. He said: “We have just been finalising our development plan up until 2010 and we’ll be focusing on infrastructure, transport and energy.”
The consultant also landed an important nuclear decommissioning contract last week, which could lead to it becoming a bigger player in the sector. Details of the contract are still sketchy, but the consultant will be providing technical support over the decommissioning of 10 sites.
Richard McCaffrey, the chief operating officer, said that it was considering also getting involved with nuclear construction at some point in the future, but refused to comment further.
The consultant will also be considering working in Romania and Bulgaria after they are integrated into European Union on 1 January.
McCaffrey said: “We’ll certainly be looking at infrastructure and development in those areas.”