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East Midlands Chamber News

King Vehicle Engineering reports a good year

Mark CarringtonThe King Vehicle Engineering Group, based in Market Harborough, Leicestershire, has released its results for the financial year 2013/14.

During the year, pre-tax profits increased 35% to £1.53m (2012/13 - £1.14m). For the period, group sales increased 15% to £19.44m (2012/13 - £16.83m).

The firm said sales growth and the increase in profitability was achieved across the business as improvements in the UK economy encouraged companies to re-invest in capital equipment.

But in addition, King says it is emerging from the recent downturn with higher profit levels due to its policy of diversification over the previous six years of the slow economy, which saw the Company place more emphasis on niche market equipment supply and equipment rental.

As a result, as its traditional business of heavy duty trailers and aerial access moves back into growth, its newly established Palfinger hookloader distributorship, Kingrail - the rail plant conversion division and its project engineering business, King Transport Equipment Limited, are all heading for expansion.

In addition, continued investment in its vehicle rental business Safety Vehicle Hire and Lease Limited has made a healthy contribution to profit.

Group Chief Executive, Mark Carrington said: “Over a two year period, sales growth has been a massive 60%.

"We have maintained our profitability throughout the recent recession and are in a good position to capitalise on the recovery in the UK economy.

"We made a decision in 2007, when the building sector collapsed, to focus 100% on UK business and be suppliers of top quality engineered products which we support in service. That involved us protecting our engineering team through diversification. That policy has paid off handsomely and has been welcomed by our customers.

"The main limitation to further growth is the UK skills shortage, particularly in the engineering sector. Good quality design engineers are the stock in trade of our business and the Government needs to recognise that the ongoing recovery in the UK is reliant on restoring a lost generation of skilled labour across many disciplines from doctors to drivers.”

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