Strong first half performance with profit before tax up 19% to £63.0 million, EPS up 19% to 61.9p and interim dividend up 23% to 32.0p reflecting confidence in the full year outlook.
Net debt of £113.8 million (H1 2016: £95.7 million), in line with expectation.
Balance sheet further strengthened with £450 million bank facility extended to 2022 on same terms; debt private placement of £100 million 10 year fixed-rate notes, adding flexibility and diversity of lenders.
Strategy to 2021 targeting sustainable growth and strong returns across all three businesses. Targets include 60% growth in profit before tax to FY 2021, a five year CAGR on dividend of at least 5% and a return on net assets in FY 2021 of at least 25%.