Transport company Go-Ahead Group has released its full year results, saying it is in a good financial position for the months ahead and describing its business model as ‘resilient’.
For the year to 31 July 2017, the Newcastle-based group reported revenue of £3.48bn, which is up from £3.36bn the previous year.
As well as reporting strong revenue figures, the group announced it has maintained performance in customer satisfaction, with a score of 90%
Operating profits were down from £162m to £151m and pre-tax profits fell from £145m to £137m, but David Brown, group chief executive said: “If not for some one-off costs in regional bus, we would have seen profit growth, rather than the consistent performance delivered year on year. In London bus, we saw profit in what is a highly competitive market.”
Go-Ahead, which has provided public transport services across the UK and Ireland since the 1980s, said such results were "against a backdrop of wider bus industry challenges”.
The group is now looking ahead, and says it has a ‘clear strategy’ for protecting and growing its core business, winning new bus and rail contracts, and developing for the future of transport.
Brown said: "Our international development strategy is progressing well and, with five contracts won in three new markets, today we announce a target of 15% to 20% of Group profit to be generated from international operations within five years.
“We will continue to bid in markets that match our investment criteria, and where we can use our skills and experience to improve local transport services.
"As one of the UK's largest providers of public transport, Go-Ahead plays a vital role in building a thriving economy and connecting communities.
“Our 29,000 employees, who are at the heart of the communities we serve, are key to our success and we believe in taking care of them. Effective partnership working is vital to delivering efficient transport systems; we work closely with key strategic partners to deliver improvement and change.
"The Group remains in a good financial position, with a robust balance sheet, allowing us to invest in our core UK businesses and providing flexibility to pursue value-adding opportunities in new and existing markets."