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Hyder operating profits up 16%

Consultant Hyder has posted recession-busting figures for the year ending 31 March 2009, with operating profit climbing by 16% to £17.4M, although restructuring costs of £9M and other costs brought the final figure down to £5M.

Hyder Consulting saw its order book grow by 22% to £384M, its revenue climb by 37% to £319M and operating profit jump 16% to £17.4M compared to the same period last year.

Markets reacted favourably to the news, with the company’s share price jumping more than 12% to 147p in early trading.

Chairman of Hyder Consulting Sir Alan Thomas said: “I am pleased to report another strong year for the Group with results ahead of last year and of market expectations.

“Our leaner structure and low gearing, together with our geographic and market spread, equip us well to manage the challenges and to take advantage of the opportunities which will arise,” he said.

The company’s debt reduced to £5.7M, from £11.1M last year, with £18.1M in cash balances and bank loan facility of £38M are committed until 2012/13, giving the company: “Considerable headroom,” according to the report.

Hyder performed well in the UK and EU, winning work on Crossrail, the M25 widening and Severn Trent Water, amongst others. It also won work on the new Berlin airport and A5 Autobahn.

In the Middle East, Hyder bucked the trend by increasing revenue by 70%, it says because it has reduced exposure to the collapsed Dubai property sector. “Our work on Burj Dubai, the world’s tallest building, and the surrounding infrastructure is progressing well,” said Thomas.

However, the company admitted that the: “Dubai market slowed in the latter half of the year, which affected cash collections, we have adapted by downsizing our operations and moving work offshore whilst reinforcing our longstanding client relationships.”

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