Persimmon planning to build on H1 success

HOUSEBUILDER Persimmon has seen a marked increase in pre-tax profits in the six months to the end of June.

Profits were up 65% to £98.7m (2011: £59.7m). Revenue was also up,13% ahead at £806.7m (2011: £712.8m).

It was good news all round for the firm, which has a number of key developments in the West Midlands. Completions were up 6% to 4,712 (2011: 4,439) and the average selling price increased 7% to £171,206 (2011: £160,583).

Persimmon also saw an improvement in its operating margins and the strengthening of its land bank. Some 5,779 new plots were acquired on 50 sites in the first half of the year, bringing the total of owned and controlled plots to 63,786 (2011: 62,364).

The firm said the strong first half performance represents an excellent start to the delivery of its new strategy and plan to return £1.9bn (620p per share) to shareholders over nine years.

Chairman Nicholas Wrigley said: “The group has made an excellent start to the current financial year, underlying pre-tax profit up 65% and an operating margin of 12.2% – an improvement of 320bps compared to the first half of 2011.

“These results reflect the early success of Persimmon’s new strategy to grow into a stronger, larger business whilst returning £1.9bn of surplus cash to shareholders.

“The future growth of Persimmon will continue to be based on the solid foundations of the good results achieved in the first half of 2012.”

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