Bovis builds a solid profit in southern UK

HOUSING group Bovis has laid the foundation for a strong 2012 after reporting significant profit growth last year, largely fuelled by family homes in the south of England.

The house-building company, which is based in Kent, expects to improve returns further in 2012 after a year that saw 2,045 homes legally completed – an eight per cent increase on the year before.

Of these, 1,624 were private homes, increasing the previous year’s average private sales price by 4.5 per cent to £180,100. Bovis said this was almost entirely due to a strategic focus on the south, reporting that 88 per cent of new sites acquired this year were in the south of England.

The group ended 2011 with net cash of £51m – £1m less than its balance at the start of the year.

Despite employment and economic concerns, Bovis starts the year with 568 homes reserved for completion – up 35 per cent on January 2010 – and has the launch of the government-backed mortgage indemnity scheme to look forward to.

Bovis Homes chief executive David Ritchie said: “The group is well placed for 2012 with increasing active sales outlets and stronger profit margins. Based on current market conditions continuing, the group can deliver significantly increased profit and a stronger return on capital employed in 2012 and beyond.”