Building outfit Carillion welcomes era of austerity

BRITISH building and support services firm Carillion said first-half underlying pre-tax profit rose 17 per cent to £58.8m and it expected to benefit from outsourcing as governments try to cut costs.

Sales were down 11 per cent on last year, however, to £2.5bn for the first half as a result of the company disposing of its public private partnership investments, Carillion said yesterday.

The company said sales had also been hit by the timing of projects in the Middle East and an increased focus on margins over revenues.

Many construction and outsourcing firms are awaiting the British government’s spending review in October which is expected to reveal the extent of cuts to public spending.

“Our support services business is well positioned to benefit from the expected increase in government outsourcing of non-core services, particularly as we move through 2011 into 2012 and 2013,” the company said.