Ballyvesey Holdings Ltd suffers pre-tax profits dip of 36% in 2017
One of Northern Ireland's biggest transport-related businesses has reported a 36% drop in pre-tax profits to £4.4m.
Ballyvesey Holdings Ltd owns a large portfolio of companies, including Montgomery Transport, East-West Transport and JE Coulter.
Now headquartered in Doncaster, Ballyvesey is still controlled by Northern Ireland shareholders in the Montgomery family.
After recording a significant rise in turnover and pre-tax profits in 2016, a recently filed financial report revealed that the company experienced a dip in 2017.
After rising from £612.9m to £621.3m last year, turnover went back down to £609.6m last year.
In a similar way, Ballyvesey Holdings had posted a sharp rise in pre-tax profits from £4.6m to £6.9m in 2016. Again, the 2017 figure dipped back under its 2015 performance to £4.4m.
The group is mainly involved in transport services, vehicle sales, trailer manufacture, finance and plant and machinery distribution, with 17 subsidiaries registered in Northern Ireland.
It also holds truck franchises for DAF, Fiat, Mercedes and Scania for various areas in the UK, and manufactures trailers for road transport under the Montracon trade name.
The latest report showed that Ballyvesey Holdings employed 2,521 people across the group in 2017, slightly down on the 2,540 workers recorded in 2016.
The bulk of its workforce (1,300) were employed as drivers or mechanics.
Administration and sales accounted for another 798 in 2017, with 423 employed in the production end.
Despite a slightly smaller workforce, the group's wage bill increased by £3m from £82.9m in 2016 to £85.9m last year.
The group's highest paid director received an income of £263,750 in 2017.
Ballyvesey Holdings has pledged to continuing to identify and develop new business opportunities within its industry, "with the view to continued growth both organically and through acquisition".
Despite the concerns being expressed over the potential impact of Brexit in many parts of the freight and transport sector, the directors state in their report that Ballyvesey is "well placed" to take advantage of opportunities to develop further both in the UK and elsewhere in Europe.
"As far as we are aware, there are no major external obstacles to this further development, other than the normal competitive pressures and general economic conditions in each of the company's markets," states the report.
It adds: "The group seeks to maintain an advantage over our competitors by offering the highest level of customer services."