Motherwell Bridge,the Lanarkshire-based engineering contractor which was on the brink of total collapse three years ago, is on course for another profitable year.

Company chairman Hugh Hayes confirmed in an informal trading statement that business in the six months to December 2005 had been strong, and profits for the period were ahead of the same period the year before.

Mr Hayes said: “The prospects for the next six months are very promising, with good order cover.  I fully expect the full year’s profit before tax to exceed last year’s £3.2M, with the group intending to continue to concentrate on profits and cashflow, rather than simply chasing turnover.

“All of our trading companies are extremely busy at present. MB Engineering Services has a healthy order book in place and is dealing with a number of overseas enquiries.  MB Inspection has won extensions on a number of its current contracts, and will complete the move of its

Aberdeen operations into new enlarged premises at Dyce this month.

“MB Aerospace is continuing to win new work from its major customers and is installing more machinery this year, while MB Faber has won several design contracts to provide tooling for the Airbus A400M project which will get under way in the next few months.”

Mr Hayes added that interest in the group’s activities from the Middle East was increasing, and Motherwell Bridge was considering opening a representative office there to deal with enquiries.

Mr Hayes confirmed that the company had met all its financial commitments to date, including a further term loan repayment in September 2005, along with the final payment of £1M due to the old pension scheme at the same time.

Mr Hayes concluded that the group would meet term loan repayments due in 2006, and would also pay off an additional amount of debt during this year as well.

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