Scottish builder Miller Group returns to profit

Scottish building firm Miller Group reported a return to profit Thursday as the housing sector bounced back last year with higher selling prices.

Scottish building firm Miller Group reported a return to profit Thursday as the housing sector bounced back last year with higher selling prices.

The company posted a pre-tax profit of £6.6m for 2012, up from a loss of £30.4m the prior year.

Revenue climbed by £32.3m to £619.9m and the firm recorded a group profit before interest of £29.2m, up 40% from £20.8m in 2011.

Miller Group performed strongly across all divisions including housing, construction, property and mining.

In housing, sales grew 5.0% to 1,881 units and the average selling price rose from £161,000 to £170,000.

The construction arm made an operating loss of £0.8m reflecting business development expenditure. However, the group won £320m of work and the order book grew 34% to £805m.

The Edinburgh based group's property business delivered strong results through developments in Scotland, the north west of England and Birmingham.

Miller's joint mining venture extracted 33% of coal from Ffos-y-fran in South Wales.

Chief Executive Officer Keith Miller said the macro-economic environment remained uncertain and economic consensus was for low growth but he believed the company was well positioned to improve results this year.

"Our businesses are all in good shape," he said.

"We have excellent teams across all of our operations, solid order books and high quality landbanks. Building on these strengths, together with supportive shareholders led by GSO, we are confident that we will continue to grow our turnover and profits.

"Two key factors necessary to restore corporate and consumer confidence in the UK are a return to growth in GDP and a long term resolution of the Eurozone crisis. Resolving these issues should lead to greater business and consumer confidence which should provide us with enhanced opportunities for further growth."

RD

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