Aberdeen property deals help Muir Group achieve accelerated turnover

Muir housing developmentProfits at Fife building firm Muir Group soared by almost £10 million last year after it successfully sold off three major development sites in Aberdeen.

Results for the year ended January 2015 saw turnover accelerate to £114,676,000, a rise of over £40,000,000 on the previous year.

Chairman John Muir said that he is “delighted” with the results and outlined that the main contributor to the increased activity was property development in Aberdeen with completion and sale of 3 major developments to UK Commercial Property Trust for £48m.

The accelerated turnover has had a corresponding impact on profitability, with group profit before tax improving from £3,951,000 in 2013/14 to £13,220,000 in 2014/2015.

Muir Construction had another successful year which saw turnover increase from £42m to £58m although profits remained at £1.6m, with margins decreasing slightly but off-set by cost reductions. Aberdeen, despite the oil price drop, continues to be a large focus for construction.

Muir Homes also continued to grow with turnover up £6,250,000 to just over £31m. House completions increased by 20 to 164 in the year, which along with margins steady at 22 per cent, and an increase in the average house price to £189,000, meant a jump in pre tax profit to £4,183,000, up some 45 per cent.

Muir Timber Systems returned to profitability with turnover at £3.9m from £2.8m previously as a result of house-building recovery and profits of £185,000 compared to a loss previously of £88,000.

Muir Leisure, trading as Deer Park Golf & Country Club, increased revenues from £1,420,000 to £1,524,000, although despite this, losses increased slightly to £241,000 from £224,000 previously.

John Muir said: “Whilst the leisure industry continues to struggle, we at Deer Park are well set up to take advantage of increased consumer spending with a strengthened management team now in place.”

Property development – which includes both Hermiston Securities and Muir Aberdeen – had a combined turnover of over £45m compared to £7m previously and generated profit of £9.8m, up from £300,000 the previous year.

“Overall, we are delighted with the performance of the business and we continue to invest in land, buildings and people,” added Mr Muir. “We anticipate 2015 being another successful year, although we do not expect profits will match the exceptional levels achieved in 2014.”

Employee numbers at Muir Group dropped slightly to 286, 15 below last year, currently this has reversed back to around 300.

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