Forecourt operator MRH (GB) has posted record profits of £25.4m.

Pre-tax profits rose 21.7% in the year to 27 September 2009, although sales fell 12.1% to £1.18bn because of reduced demand for fuel.

The company, formed in 2007 to acquire Malthurst Group and Pace Petroleum, said that despite petrol volatility during the year, it would continue to hunt for acquisitions to add to its network of 288 sites.

"With its healthy cash position and ability to deliver strong results in difficult trading conditions, the group is well placed to make further strategic acquisitions and deliver another robust financial performance in 2009/2010," the company said in accounts at Companies House.

"The group will continue with its strategy of profitable acquisitions ... and will also pursue organic growth by improving the earning potential of existing operations."

A programme to merge its two retail networks into one, trading as MRH Retail, had incurred one-off costs of £300,000, but was forecast to deliver cost savings and operation improvements this year, the group added. Last week, The Grocer's Top 50 revealed MRH Retail recorded sales of £128.6m last year.