Higher-quality locations combined with an increase in the average selling price underpinned a 40 per cent rise in the group operating profit of house builder Taylor Wimpey in 2012.
Average selling prices on private completions increased by 6% to £197,000, according to the group's trading statement for the year ending December 31st.
The overall average selling price increased by 6% to £181,000 and home completions increased by 7% to 10,886.
Overall, the group's net private reservation rate for the full year was 0.58 homes per outlet per week, up from 0.54 in 2011. Cancellation rates were below the long-term average at 15.2%, down from 15.8% in 2011.
Pete Redfern, Chief Executive Officer of Taylor Wimpey, commented: "2012 was another year of significant progress for Taylor Wimpey with an increase of over 40% in Group operating profit. We are delivering on the strategy that we set out in 2011, including a return to UK double digit operating margin ahead of schedule. As we look forward to 2013, we are confident that we will continue to deliver against our key objectives and target further improvement."
Miniature antennas manufacturer Sarantel is considering selling its operating subsidiary in light of the group's weak balance sheet and limited financial resources, according to a company announcement issued on Monday morning.
The AIM-listed manufacturer, which published its audited results for the year ending September 30th, disclosed an operating loss before depreciation and amortisation of £2.0m in spite of revenues for the year of £3.0m.
Despite receiving its biggest order to date from a military customer, the group predicted that it would take "a number of years before Sarantel is able to generate sufficient revenues to reach cash break-even from the military market alone".
During the year, the group stated that it had secured a £2.0m loan facility so as to provide enough working capital to service the large order, which formed part of a multi-year supply contract.
Chairman: Group doesn't have enough capital to exploit opportunities
Chairman Geoff Shingles stated: "Whilst the board believes there are attractive prospects in the consumer market for Sarantel's technology, the group's weak balance sheet and limited financial resources are such that the group does not have sufficient working capital to exploit these opportunities and requires further funding."
He added: "The board has considered the options for raising additional funding for the group and has concluded that given the challenging stock-market conditions for smaller companies such as Sarantel, that shareholder value would be best preserved by a disposal of the operating business to a third party that has the scale and funds to invest in developing the market opportunities.