Portsmouth ups half-year operating profit by 39% before exceptionals
Portsmouth Water’s reported operating profit to 30 September 2018 up 39% to £3.97m on sales up 4% to £20.94m.
Exceptional items including a £189,000 loss on fixed asset sales during the period and a £1.84m gain on the disposal of its non-household business in the previous half year landed a 52.5% year on year slump in profit before tax at £681,000.
The company has invested some £0.5m in early planning and development work for its Havant Thicket Winter Storage Reservoir project scheduled for completion in 2029. The reservoir will enable Portsmouth to up its bulk water supplies to Southern Water.
Despite “significant additional investment and resource being applied” Portsmouth reported its failure to leakage reduction targets for the half year. “Whilst we continue to focus significant management attention in this area, it is likely that we will miss the 2018/19 annual target.” it warned. It said the number of bursts on its network increased during the sustained dry weather last summer due to changes in soil conditions.