Office space provider Regus today reported a 23% increase in annual revenue to £1.534billion following a record year of investment.

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Operating profit for 2013 was 1% ahad at £90.8million, despite the impact of investment totalling £301.1m, although increased interest charges left the pre-tax total 4% lower at £81.5m.

Operating profits at the group’s mature centres rose 33% while its newer sites also performed in line with expectations.

Regus founder and chief executive Mark Dixon, who was born in Essex where his early ventures including running sandwich, hot dog and burger buns businesses, said: “It’s been another record year of achievement for Regus, with strong progress made across all parts of the business.”

“Group revenue was up 23%, following a 30% increase in the size of our global network to 1,831 business centre locations, an unprecedented rate of growth and investment, which included the successful integration of MWB.

“Our mature business remains the engine room of the group and it delivered operating profits in excess of £205m, a 33% increase, alongside free cash flow of £157m. This strong performance from our mature business allowed us to reinvest in growth, so ensuring the incremental returns of the future.”

Mr Dixon added: “At this early point in the year it is always somewhat difficult to predict precisely how many locations we will add, but we expect at least 300 new business centre locations as well as the addition of more third place locations.

“Current trading is good, although the strengthening of sterling in recent months will affect the translation of our results. Notwithstanding this, we remain confident in our business model and our prospects for the year ahead.”

The Regus portfolio of business centres within the eastern region includes two in Mr Dixon’s home county of Essex, in Chelmsford and Brentwood, and others in Cambridge and Norwich.

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