Half year results for support services and construction group Interserve show a £6 million pre-tax loss from a £24.9m profit last year, but this is in line with expectations, according to its new management team.
Under its Fit for Growth strategy the group completed a refinancing programme and exited non-core businesses, including property development and Energy from Waste. Despite sales being down from £1.64 billion to £1.48bn for the six months to the end of June the group reports its recovery plan is on track with significant operating profit improvement compared to the second half of 2017, up £11.5 million to £40.1 million.
Chief Executive Officer, Debbie White commented: “The first half of 2018 was an important period for Interserve as the new management team took actions to bring stability to the business and agree the direction of the Group’s future strategy. The ‘Fit for Growth’ initiatives we are implementing are delivering material cost savings and will result in a simpler, more focused and more effective Interserve. The refinancing that we completed in April provides a firmer financial footing from which to execute these plans.
“Today we have a strategy that provides a clear direction, leveraging our areas of strength, where Interserve can provide compelling customer propositions, delivered with rigorous operational and financial discipline. Whilst there remains a significant amount of work to do, we have energy and momentum in the business as evidenced by the significant new contracts wins secured in the first half of the year.
“First-half trading performance was in line with our expectations. We continue to make progress on the resolution of our EfW projects, although risks to the programme still remain. We believe that the benefit of the actions taken in the first half underpin our unchanged full-year expectations, as we make further progress with the implementation of the Group’s strategy and the Fit for Growth transformation programme.”