Support services group Interserve saw underlying profit leap 50 per cent and announced that it expected further growth in 2005.
The Berkshire-based group, part- built on the old Birmingham-based Douglas Construction business, said that its future workload was up 14 per cent at £4.9 billion.
"With our consistently high client retention levels, the group is in a strong position to deliver growth in 2005 and beyond," chief executive Adrian Ringrose said.
The company, which has its project services division in Erdington, Birmingham, and its equipment services group at Aldridge, provides a wide range of services from cleaning schools and protecting hospitals, to fitting out new shops and removing asbestos, much of which is publicly funded.
However, the company remains confident that whatever the outcome of the General election - likely to be held in May - there will be no dramatic impact on Interserve.
Mr Ringrose said: "The outlook for UK public spending is pretty healthy. There's a socio-political imperative to invest in infrastructure as well as a desire on the part of both main parties to improve the delivery of public services."
Interserve made £43.4 million profit before tax, amortisation and exceptional items in 2004, on turnover up 4.7 per cent to £1.27 billion. Headline profit came in at £36 million.
The final dividend was set at 9.7 pence, making the total dividend 4.4 per cent higher at 14.1 pence.
Although Interserve said it was looking for takeover targets, it said it would not be spending large sums given that it will continue to focus primarily on growing its business organically.
"I wouldn't rule out some sort of bolt-on activity, but it will be around the edges and it will be to access specialist skills or to access particular market sectors, rather than a fundamental transformation," Mr Ringrose said.
Meanwhile Midlands group Lavendon, which hires powered access equipment to the construction industry, reported annual profit plunged to breakeven after economic slowdown in Germany and excess machine capacity across Europe hit profits last year.
Still, the company, based in Lutterworth, Leicestershire, gave an upbeat statement on the prospects for 2005, and said the current year is trading in line with its forecasts.
Lavendon posted a pretax profit of £21,000, down from £3 million last year, hit by £14.5 million of exceptional items, including the cost of refinancing debt, goodwill, and an £8.4 million provision made against German and Austrian businesses.
Turnover was largely flat at £108 million, compared to £107.8 million in 2003, while net debt was cut to £89 million.