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Hill & Smith profits up 9pc in last year

Hill & Smith, the leading infrastructure and building products supplier, today reported profits up 9 per cent to £42 million on turnover down 7 per cent to £390 million.

The firm, which employs over 3,000 people and counts infrastructure and construction products, as well as galvanising services as its main businesses, reported record underlying pre tax profits for 2009.

Bosses cited strong cost controls and tight management of its cash as reasons behind the strong performance. These measures led to a reduction in the firm’s debt to £88m, which fell from £146m a year earlier.

Hill & Smith chief executive Derek Muir said: “In the context of the difficult macro-economic conditions the Group has continued to demonstrate its resilience and strengths by delivering another strong set of results.”

He added: “In the UK we aim to maximise opportunities arising from committed spend on major infrastructure projects such as managed motorway programmes, rail platform extensions, flood alleviation schemes and health & safety on roads.

“Activity levels in our other markets continue to be impacted by the general economic climate and we do not anticipate any material increase in volumes. Nevertheless, the cost reduction initiatives put into place in 2009, together with continued focus on pricing discipline, will further strengthen the resilience of our margins and earnings.”