Profits at Budget jumped 10% against an increase in gross written premiums from £256m to £280m, for the year ended 30 June.

The UK's third biggest personal insurance intermediary reported pre-tax profits of £8.1m for the year; a figure it estimates was severely diminished by investment in new businesses.

Group chief executive Peter Winslow said the company could have registered an extra £5m in pre-tax profit if it had not invested in a start-up contact centre in South Africa and in its affinity arm Junction.

He said returns from the investments should begin to accumulate over the next three years.

' Peter Winslow explains his strategy.