Logistics giant Wincanton has reported a 6% increase in half-year pre-tax profit to £21.4m on sales up 16.4% to £1.19bn.

Its core UK business had performed well during the six months to 30 September, with sales up 10.8% to £740.8m.

Wincanton also revealed this morning it had acquired container logistics provider CEL Group for an initial debt-free consideration of £19.5m, plus a further £4.5m subject to financial performance.

CEL Group operates from eight UK locations, employing 470 people.

“Our results for the half-year confirm both the strength and resilience of our well-diversified portfolio of activities and the quality of our long-term customer partnerships,” said CEO Graeme McFaull.

“We continue to see attractive opportunities to accelerate our growth through infill acquisitions.”