Northern Ireland

Northstone: NI construction group reports fall in profits

Construction workers on building site
Image caption Northern Ireland's construction industry is recovering after a deep recession but still faces challenges in the current economic climate

Northstone, one of Northern Ireland largest construction groups, reported reduced turnover and profits in 2013.

The firm said market conditions "continued to be challenging" but that they anticipate a return to growth in 2014.

Northstone showed a pre-tax profit of £6m on turnover of £239m, compared to 2012 when profit of £8m was achieved on a £299m turnover.

Its best-known trading business is the Farrans construction firm.

It also sells quarry products and ground access systems for the utility industries.

The fall in group turnover in 2012 was all attributable to its building/civil engineering division where turnover fell from £226m to £153m.

The company's workforce fell from 992 to 968 over the year and the accounts show redundancy costs of £358,000.

During the year, the firm bought the Cemex (NI) cement business for an undisclosed sum.

Northstone is ultimately owned by CRH plc, the Dublin-based building materials group which is worth around £10bn.

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