Transport giant the Go Ahead Group said good progress across its divisions has put it on course to meet its expectations for the full financial year.
The Newcastle-headquartered business, which employs more than 23,000 people across the UK, said its figures for the six months ended December 28 2013 are well in line with expectations, with revenues for the six months topping £1.37bn, up from the £1.29bn posted for the same period the previous year.
Profit before tax rose 30.8% to £40.3m and the operating profit margin climbed to 3.7% from 3.2% a year earlier.
Group chief executive David Brown said the firm’s three-year growth plan is making good progress, with the use of technology in the form of smart and mobile ticketing data showing commitment to customers’ needs.
Brown said: “In October 2012 we set out a three year plan of growth and business improvement with the aim of raising the performance of our UK bus business to £100 million in operating profit.
“We are making good progress, and 16 months into that timetable, our planning assumptions remain valid and we are on course for our target.
“Meanwhile we maintain our long-term commitment to rail and were pleased to have submitted our bids for the Thameslink and Crossrail franchise competitions during the period.
“The sustained efforts of our 23,500 people, backed by substantial targeted investments in technology, fleet and new facilities, are strengthening our business by improving services for all our customers.
“Our use of smart and mobile ticketing data helps deepen our understanding of our customers’ needs and allows us to continue to develop and improve our capabilities, to make our bus and rail services more attractive and more convenient. With record passenger numbers, effective cash management and a strong balance sheet, Go-Ahead is in good shape.”