The Galliford Try Board recognises the importance of dividends to shareholders, and in formulating its dividend policy has taken into account the Group's return to profitability, its strong balance sheet and high quality order book as well as its longer term prospects.
The Board is committed to maintaining a strong balance sheet and continues to review the Group's overall capital position. Our priorities are to support the Group's ongoing operational requirements and strategic opportunities and to pay a dividend to shareholders.
Consistent with this approach, the Group expects dividend per share to increase with earnings, with dividend cover expected to be in the range of 2.0-2.5 times earnings. Taking into account the Group's available cash resources, the Board will continue to review opportunities to further reduce the dividend cover in the future.
The directors have reviewed the Group's results and outlook for the current financial year and have declared an interim dividend of 1.2p per share which will be paid on 9 April 2021 to shareholders on the register at close of business on 12 March 2021.
Other financial highlights include:
Profit before tax of £4.1m (H1 2020: £5.6m pre-exceptional loss) and divisional operating margin of 1.6%, in line with expectations and strategy for sustainable earnings growth.
Well-capitalised balance sheet, with average month-end cash for the period of £158m and PPP asset portfolio of £44m.
High quality order book of £3.3bn (H1 2020: £3.2bn) in line with risk-focused approach.
Business well placed with market leading sector positions in chosen public and regulated markets, underpinned by significant opportunities.
All projects continue to be fully operational and delivering near normal productivity; no use of Government Covid-19 support in FY21.
Commitment to operating sustainability reflected by long-term inclusion in the FTSE Good Index.