Financial advisor Fairpoint Group reported a drop in annual revenues, as less people applied for individual voluntary arrangements (IVA).
Revenue fell to £28.4m in the year ended December 31st 2013, from £29.9m. The company said it was a "subdued" year in the market for IVAs, a formal repayment proposal presented to a debtor's creditors as an alternative to bankruptcy.
Cash generated from operations dropped to £9.1m from £13.7m, including £3.0m of exceptional VAT related revenue.
Nevertheless, adjusted pre-tax profit rose to £8.1m from £7.6m, in line with expectations as the company diversified its income streams.
Revenues from diversified activities, which comprises debt management and claims management services, accounted for 42% of total revenue, compared to 36% in 2012.
"The group has continued to diversify its income streams and grow its profits, despite subdued conditions within the IVA market," said Chief Executive Chris Moat.
"Opportunities to provide additional products and services are being pursued, including legal services, to ensure continuing momentum. The group has entered the year with significant growth in its debt management base, which has grown by over 60% since the end of 2012, and is well placed to build on this given its strong cash generation and access to finance facilities."
The company proposed a final dividend of 3.85p, taking the total dividend for the year to 6p, up 9% on the previous year's 5.5p.
Soft drinks firm Nichols reported double-digit pre-tax profit growth during its financial year as it continues to grow its UK and international markets.
The Merseyside-based group, whose brands include Vimto, Sunkist, Panda and Weight Watchers, said group sales rose 2% to £109.9m for the year ended December 31st. Pre-tax profit, pre-exceptional items, climbed 10% to £22.5m.
Exceptional costs total £3.7m and include the implementation of a planned management restructuring and a provision of £2.0m to cover the potential costs of a litigation claim from a licensee in Pakistan.
The claim, which the company is defending, relates to the licensee's rights to manufacture and distribute Vimto cordial in Pakistan, it explained.
Operating profit margin increased to 20% from 19% in 2012. Earnings per share (EPS), before exceptional items, rose 11% to 45.8p.
UK sales gained momentum in the second half of 2013, rising by 5% year-on-year taking the full year total to £86.8m, 2% ahead of the prior year.
It also increased its market share of the Still category with sales of Vimto cordial growing to 11%.
"We continued with our planned reduction in promotional activity in the heavily discounted Carbonate sector where our sales declined by 6%," Nichols said.
Growth continued in its African markets and along with progress in the Middle East, full year sales rose 2% to £23.1m.
Non-Executive Chairman John Nichols commented: "Although economic indicators suggest signs of optimism, there is evidence that consumer spending in the UK remains cautious and we expect the UK retail market to remain challenging in 2014.
"Despite this environment we are confident that the group can maintain its strong performance into 2014. We will continue to invest in our brands and grow distribution in both our UK and international markets."
The group has proposed a final dividend of 13.3p, up from 11.7p the year before, taking total dividend for the year up 13% to 19.62p.
Net cash at the year-end jumped 39% to £34.3m.