First Group posts ‘resilient’ H1 results

First Group posts 'resilient' H1 results

Graham Sutherland

First Group has revealed a statutory operating profit of £62.1 milllion, up from £52.2m, in its H1 results for the six months ending 24 September 2022

Earlier this year the group sold off its East Scotland division to McGill’s Buses.

Abroad, the group made progress monetising contingent values from exiting North America, with £122m sale of legacy Greyhound properties. The deal is anticipated to complete in December.

CEO Graham Sutherland said: “We have delivered a resilient financial performance in the period despite significant headwinds – demonstrating our strengths in the UK bus and rail markets and the increasing capability and potential we are building into our businesses as public transport continues to navigate the aftershocks of pandemic travel restrictions.

“With a strong balance sheet and an important role supporting the sustainability and economic growth agendas in our core UK public transport markets, we see clear opportunities to create further value and deliver progressive returns to shareholders in the coming years.”

Regarding the firm’s outlook for the year ahead, a spokesperson said: “Although the political, economic and industrial relations backdrop and pace of travel volume recovery are challenges, management’s expectations for FY 2023 are broadly unchanged despite a shift in mix.”

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