Lend Lease has beaten expectations with a 25.4% increase in after tax profit to $315.6 million despite a fall in revenue for the first half.
Analysts had forecast a profit of about $305 million.
Revenue fell 9.4% to 5.897 billion in the six months to December due to less work in construction.
However, CEO Steve McCann says the company’s $40.4 billion global development pipeline, including a significant number of urban regeneration projects, is driving growth and earnings.
“The Australian and UK residential markets have remained strong,” he says.
Australia contributed $297.6 million profit driven by a strong performance from residential development, investment management activities and the retirement business.
New work secured includes $700 million project, Aurora, a residential land project with more than 3,000 lots in Victoria.
Overall, the property development segment performed strongly delivering profit after tax of $145 million, a 12% increase.
Infrastructure development delivered 134% increase in profit to $70.7 million due to fees received following the financial close of two key projects in Australia and the sale of the UK facilities management business in Europe.
“The positive residential housing market has supported growth in our pre sold revenue, which now totals $3.6 billion and has further increased our earnings visibility over the next three years,” McCann says.
The company is maintaining profit expectations of $604 million to $628 million for the full financial year.
The company declared a 27 cent interim dividend.