WASTE management firm Biffa said it had taken action to bolster its biggest business as it reported good first-half progress for the group.
The group, which rejected a £1bn private equity approach from Montagu and Hg Capital in September, said there were “improving trends” at its collections division despite lower operating profits.
Biffa, which relies on waste collection from companies and local authorities for more than half its revenues, had been hit by heavier competition.
The group said it had responded by cutting prices and improving customer service in that sector. As a result, volumes from local businesses had stabilised in the six months since April compared with a 2% fall for the same period last year.
Operating profits from collections fell by 13% to £27m in the six months to September 28, but a strong showing by Biffa’s landfill division boost group-wide profits by a forecast-beating 7% to £52.4m.