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Laing O’Rourke's profits rocket

One of the top m&e contractors said profits soared by almost a third today. Reporting its full year results for the financial year ending March 31 2007, Laing O’Rourke said turnover rose 26 per cent to £3.5 billion, up from £2.3bn over the same 2006 period. Earnings before income tax climbed a massive 51.6 per cent to £62.3m from £41.1m last year. The firm, which credits its success with its directly-employed workforce, said its order book at year end was £8.4bn against £5.6bn in the previous twelve months. Ray O’Rourke, chairman and chief executive, said: “We have delivered exceptional growth of 51.6 per cent across the group, which we have reinvested into our strategic vision of developing human capital, investing in new construction methodologies and growing our Explore Capital Business.” Iain Ferguson, group finance director, said: “Our Group order book is strong across all key areas of the business, with some 86 per cent of next year’s revenues accounted for, while we continue to forecast significant levels in the order book two or more years out.”