The company has also restored the interim dividend, paying 0.1p, equal to the final last year.
Pre-tax profits rose 263 per cent to pounds 817,000, boosted by acquisitions. Richard Phillips, the chairman who was put in to rescue the business in 1990, said: 'The performance has been achieved despite a background of weak demand and price pressures.
'Progress has been made by heavy emphasis on cost reduction, fairly fierce cash management, winning new business and making earnings-enhancing acquisitions.'
The average trading margin rose from 6.2 to 8.7 per cent. The shares fell 3p to 22 1/2p on concern about exposure to bad debt at Leyland DAF. The company said the maximum loss would be pounds 100,000 and the house broker, BZW, marked its full-year forecast down pounds 100,000 to pounds 2.4m.Reuse content