Oil and gas services firm John Wood Group has seen its H1 2006 profit before tax grow by 35% and revealed that it expects full-year profit to beat current forecasts.

The Scotland, UK-based company reported that, in the six months to June 2006, revenues increased by 18.5% compared to H1 2005, rising to $1.6 billion, while profit before tax rose 35% to $75.6 million.

John Wood Group attributes these encouraging figures to strong revenue growth in its engineering & production facilities and well support divisions, together with stronger margins across all divisions.

The company also cited a strong global oil and gas market, and stressed that it is continuing to expand its relationship with the major global oil companies, independents and national oil corporations.

In terms of its oil and gas operations, John Wood Group saw a modest improvement in the North American power market and stated that it sees good opportunities for growth in the rest of the world.

Wood Group Pratt & Whitney and TransCanada Turbines, which serve customers in the oil & gas and power markets, had a strong first half, particularly driven by demand from clients in the power markets.

Meanwhile, the company said its focus on long-term contracts is continuing, with recent wins including the power station operations and maintenance contract for LS Power and new maintenance contracts with Air Products and Cinergy.

Our oil & gas development related activities are growing strongly and we are continuing to expand our production support activities to maximize the later cycle opportunities, commented Sir Ian Wood, chairman and chief executive of Wood Group. Business continues to strengthen, particularly in our engineering and well support activities, and we believe our result for the year will be ahead of expectations.