VT Group has reported a 29 per cent drop in pre-tax profits for the year ending 31 March, however it is confident of a strong year ahead as it focuses on its core services business.
The group said that profit before tax fell to £32.2m from £45.5m in the previous year.
However, orders increased by 12 per cent to £4.5bn at the end of the year and turnover from continuing operations increased by 30 per cent in 2009 to £1,096m.
The company is currently preparing to exit its shipbuilding joint venture, BVT Surface Fleet, ending nearly 150 years of shipbuilding at VT.
The group claims the move will allow it to enter high-value engineering-based services businesses that will strengthen its balance sheet in the current economic crisis.
Once regulatory approval has been granted, the group will be organised into three operating segments: defence, government and critical services, and VT Group.
Looking ahead, Mike Jeffries, chairman of VT, said: ‘We believe that our new focus will provide us with a more stable business with greater long-term visibility, financial flexibility and better prospects for growth.
‘We will concentrate on expanding our existing businesses organically and, where appropriate, through acquisition to strengthen our offering to existing customers and provide new capabilities.
‘Reorganising the business to create a more customer-focused structure will help us improve our relationships with customers and create opportunities to add extra work-streams to current activities.
‘The new structure will also help us as we concentrate on renewing and extending several of our existing contracts.
‘We are in a good position due to excellent visibility of earnings and strong operating cash flow, an expanding order book and robust balance sheet.
‘The board remains confident about the current year and beyond.’