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Breheny reaps utilities move

FINANCE

J BREHENY'S decision to shun utilities work due to poor margins continues to pay off, with workload and profits both hitting record levels at the East Anglian-based civils contractor.

Pre-tax profits bumped up £566,000 to £2.3 million in the year to March 2004 as turnover edged up £5.4 million to £63.9 million.

Chairman John Breheny said: 'Compared to other contractors our progress may seem pedestrian but the maintenance of a strong balance sheet will always take priority over growth.'

Operating profits drove up £460,000 to £1.9 million, giving the business a highly respectable margin of 3 per cent and Breheny ended the year with net assets of £6.9 million.

The start of a £40 million roads framework deal with Alfred McAlpine and Tarmac helped boost workloads, while Breheny is replacing utilities work with waste management and landfill contracts.

A £5 million job to build four waste transfer stations for Shanks also buoyed turnover last year.

Group managing director John Haygreen and his deputy Jim Ranner retired and were replaced by Bill Mansfield and Peter Field respectively.