A long-established rural firm has announced a 28% rise in profits.
H&H Group, which runs the Carlisle livestock mart and a number of related businesses, announced pre-tax profits of £1.297m on a turnover of £14.390mn.
The group employs 270 people across the North and Scotland, with insurance, property, printing and auction businesses attached to the main livestock operation.
Chief executive Brian Richardson said: “This is a solid set of results in an economy that, whilst improving, is still difficult to predict. Harrison & Hetherington, our auctioneering business, has performed well and we have again seen high volumes through our seven auction centres.
“Over the last three years we have invested in our sites to ensure that we maintain our leading position in this sector. This commitment to this area of our business has been well received by our customers and I am pleased to advise that further investment is planned in the coming year.”
The company’s two property businesses have also performed well with H&H King seeing income 7% higher than the previous year, and H&H Land and Property a 9.6% increase in turnover. The uncertainty over the Scottish independence referendum led to a slowdown in the latter part of the year, the firm said, but activities are now returning to normal.
During the financial year, the group transferred its H&H Borderway Finance business to the Cumberland Building Society, significantly reduced its gearing and giving it scope to identify further opportunities for growth in the key sectors in which it operates.
The firm was established over 140 years ago and is well known in the rural economy.