Bear is bullish as it continues on acquisition trail


NORTHERN Bear, which concentrates on acquiring northern-based building services businesses, reported a hike in profits due to its recent acquisitions and said it will continue to acquire more businesses.

A pre-tax profit of 2.3 million was reported for the year ended 31 March 2008 compared with 100,000 the same period a year before. Sales for the year rose to 32.2m from 4.8m the year earlier.

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The group is concentrating towards the public sector building services market rather than the depressed new-build sector. Consequently, it will be reclassified from the FTSE building materials sector into the FTSE support services sector in June 2008.

It made four acquisitions during the year, benefiting through economies of scale and cross-selling. It said it will continue its aggressive acquisitive streak and hopes to add a further three or four businesses, on top of the two already acquired in April.

Chairman Jon Pither said: "We set out a clear strategy to acquire established, cash-generative building services businesses which will contribute to the group's revenue and profitability."

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