January 21, 2007 / 4:09 PM / 12 years ago

Acquisitions help property adviser DTZ lift profit

LONDON, Jan 17 (Reuters) - British property adviser DTZ Holdings Plc DTZ.L said acquisitions and strong growth in Britain, Singapore and the Netherlands drove a 57 percent rise in its first-half pretax profit.

The company, which has 200 offices in 40 countries, also said on Wednesday it expected to meet analysts’ pretax profit forecast of about 36.5 million pounds ($71.7 million) for its full financial year.

“We have been investing very heavily in the business organically and through acquisitions, and I think that those efforts are showing through,” Chief Executive Officer Mark Struckett told Reuters in an interview.

Its pretax profit rose to 15.4 million pounds ($30.2 million) in the six months to Oct. 31, on turnover up 31.2 percent at 125 million.

“Given our excellent performance so far this year ... we believe we are well placed to meet current market expectations for our full year ... We look forward to continuing good progress,” the company said in a statement.

Capital markets turnover — investment management, investment agency and corporate finance — increased by 51.6 percent to 36.43 million pounds. This includes the effect of DTZ’s 50 percent acquisition last year of DTZ Rockwood in the United States.

DTZ acquired the remaining 70 percent of the equity in its Chinese operation, and the company plans to make more investments in China this year, Struckett said.

The company also predicted solid growth for continental Europe, particularly Germany.

DTZ proposed an interim dividend of 3.5 pence per share, up 27.3 percent.

“DTZ continues to reap the rewards both of the investments it has made over the past several years ... and from the positive trends across its business units,” Cazenove said in a research note.

Shares in DTZ were down 2.1 percent at 733 pence at 0955 GMT, valuing the group at just over 400 million pounds.

Both DTZ stock and the FTSE 350 Real Estate Index .FTNMX8730 have risen over the past two years to peak around the start of 2007 and then slip back. DTZ has fallen about 13 percent from a peak on Jan. 3 and has underperformed the index by about 5 percent so far this year.

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