Training and contract recruitment services provider ATA Group increased its interim dividend by 50%.
ATA’s management says the business is back on a sound footing after problems last year. The restructuring of the railway industry and a shortage of management held back the group.
Although the rise in pre-exceptional profits from £157,000 to £248,000 in the six months to June 2007 may look modest but it is a big improvement on the second half loss. That is why management is confident enough to increase the interim dividend from 1p to 1.5p a share.
All the profits were generated by ATA Selection which is increasing the number of consultants it employs.
Increased capital spending on railways is helping to boost demand for training. Staff provision contracts for the London Underground have been completed and there is sign of any additional work for the time being. The railway division is still losing money but at a reduced rate.
ATA intends to grow the operations organically and through the acquisition of support services businesses with a proven track record. It recently started a business supplying engineering contractors to large businesses and is entering the white collar construction recruitment market.
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