Consultancy in profit... and on the hunt for acquisitions

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DESIGN and engineering consultancy WYG said it is on 
the hunt for acquisitions both in the UK and abroad following a return to profit in the first half of 2013.

The Leeds-based firm said it had £12.5m on its balance sheet at the half year end on September 30 and it is continuing to generate cash.

Chief executive Paul Hamer said the group is six to nine months ahead of cash flow targets and investments could range from bolt on acquisitions to recruiting the right individuals to expand the business.

“We’ll look at businesses that are experts in what they do, probably with revenues of £5m or less,” he said.

In the UK the group will focus on acquisitions that can engage with clients early in the planning cycle.

Internationally it will probably look at UK-based businesses that have a strong presence in Asia and Africa.

“We’d be looking to find assets that can accelerate growth with international clients. We’ve got an acquisitions team together that have a number of targets,” said Mr Hamer.

WYG has won several major contracts with the Ministry of Defence to work on its “Base Optimisation” programme.

This programme oversees the streamlining of the MoD’s UK estate and the six year programme to repatriate British forces from Germany to the UK.

Overseas it has won a number of new contracts in areas 
that have been hit by conflict and it sees this as a strong growth area.

Last year it won a significant two-year contract with the MoD to help run Camp Bastion, the main military base in Afghanistan.

Its team on site in camp Bastion is now concentrating on the base decommissioning 
programme ahead of combat troop withdrawal by December 2014.

“We’re working with the MoD and the International Department of Development, helping them to re-stabilise fragile and conflict affected states,” said Mr Hamer.

“We’re following UK PLC into these countries.

“The MoD has a military programme. We look after everything else.”

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