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Inchcape profits rise

Inchcape has reported pre-tax profits before exceptional items of £120 million for the six months to June 30, against £112m for the same period last year.

Sales were up 28.5% to £3.1bn and reported pre-tax profits were up 11.4% to £124.8m. The good results have prompted Inchcape to increase its interim dividend by 5% to 5.25 pence per share.

The group said it remains confident about its prospects for its full year results.

"Inchcape has again delivered record results in the first half of the year, reflecting the progress we are making in executing our strategy and the benefits of a broad geographical spread of businesses. Australia, Greece, Belgium, UK and emerging markets all achieved record profits in the first six months.

"In the second half we expect to benefit from the continued improvement in customer service, our focus on the value drivers of the business and from the recent acquisitions in the UK and emerging markets. We remain confident in our prospects for 2007,” said Peter Johnson, Inchcape chairman.

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