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Ikley company bucks the trend with record £750m order book
Focusing on areas away from the struggling construction sector helped Ilkley-based NG Bailey return to profit in the year to February.
The privately-owned engineering, IT and building services provider turned a £4.2 million loss in 2010 into a pre-tax profit of £7.2 million last year on a turnover that was 12 per cent higher at £464 million.
It now has an order book worth a record £750 million.
The group has five divisions employing 3,000 people.
Group-wide operating costs were cut last year, and all five divisions returned to profit under chief executive, David Hurcomb, who joined the company in 2010.
His strategy was to ensure NG Bailey made the most of all its operations, including services that help to reduce building costs, shorten build times and reduce overall operational and energy costs.
Mr Hurcomb said: “This is a strong result in what has been a very challenging environment, not just for us, but for UK industry as a whole.
“There are a number of reasons for the positive result, including a reduction in operating costs as we move towards being a leaner business, and an improvement in trading across all of NG Bailey’s divisions – with every single one returning a profit for the year.
“Our facilities services and IT services divisions are performing particularly well, but some sectors, such as construction, remain very difficult. However, we have the reputation, capability and financial strength to see this through.”
Mr Hurcomb said NG Bailey was a financially sound business, which did not rely on borrowing.
The group had a strong bank balance, assets of nearly £90 million – an increase of £9 million from 2011 – and long-term backing from the Bailey family.
He added: “I am confident about our future.
“The next couple of years will remain very tough, but we are concentrating our efforts on reaching new markets, where there are many opportunities for us to seek growth in the longer term.”