Speedy Hire has reported strong results for the year ended 31 March 2019, with revenue, excluding disposals, increasing by 6% to £389.2 million due to growth in services revenue and a rise in business from small-to-medium-sized (SME) customers.

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The growth in custom from SMEs helped to offset revenues lost as a result of the liquidation of Carillion.

The UK-based provider of equipment and tools rental also reported a 7.8% rise in its EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) to £78.7 million, compared to £73 million in the previous year.

Speedy’s acquisition of training provider Geason Holdings Limited in December 2018, to enhance its training position, was followed by the acquisition of powered access specialist Lifterz Holdings Limited in March 2019, strengthening its powered access offering. As a result, net debt increased to £89.4m, from £69.4 million the year before.

Adjusted profit before tax was up 19.3%, from £25.9 million to £30.9 million. In the UK and Ireland, operating profit increased to £29.4m, while in the Middle East operating profit increased to £5.8m, reflecting higher activity levels.

Speedy invested £21.9 million to grow its fleet, and return on capital employed rose by 1.3 percentage points, from 11.5% to 12.8%.

Asset utilisation in the UK and Ireland improved from 55.4% to 57% as a result of further rationalisation of the company’s fleet.

Russell Down, Chief Executive, said, “These strong results demonstrate the excellent progress Speedy is making against our strategy, including a significant increase in our SME customer base, services revenue growth, and the completion of two UK acquisitions. We have further increased our return on capital through an improved operating performance and continuing to optimise the business using digital technology. The business has a strong platform for future growth.”

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