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Client focus pays in Simons partnerships

FINANCE Despite static workload, firm's profits rise 48 per cent and margins hit 3.1 per cent

SIMONS has enjoyed its best period of trading in 60 years after the Lincolnshire-based construction group's decision to focus on a small number of long-term clients paid off.

This approach meant the workload was virtually static but profits rose nearly 50 per cent, margins topped 3.1 per cent and the group reached £21 million in cash reserves.

Chairman Paul Hodgkinson said: 'During the year, we concluded an exercise defining the rocks on which our business is built. This has resulted in changes to the personnel leading our teams and to our structure.

'Our construction business will continue to see growth over the coming years and, having refocused on the three product-based divisions of construction, fit-out and maintenance, we are concentrating on serving our existing customers by improving our products and skills. This will give us a platform for accelerating growth from 2010 onwards.'

Construction provides three quarters of the workload and 86 per cent of this comes through long-term work for major retail clients such as Asda, Primark, J Sainsbury and Boots.

Clients at the maintenance operation include Royal Bank of Scotland. It carries out about 23,000 jobs for the banking giant every year.

Simons, which also has off ices in Bristol, Chelmsford, Leeds, London, Manchester, Nottingham, Wakefield and York, is DIY group B&Q 's only partner for freehold retail schemes.