London broker Stuart Alexander expects to make earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of between £1.5m and £2m for 2003, managing director Stuart Reid said.

The forecast compares pre-tax profits of £809,841 for 2002 with £639,780 the year before, an increase of 27%.

Turnover increased 10% during the period to £6.4m from £5.8m.

Operating profit increased 20% to £1m from £846,466.

Reid said turnover was forecast to increase to approaching £8m in 2003. Gross written premium would be about £50m on an annualised basis by year-end.

Recruitment in marketing, operations, property and compliance had followed a period of acquisition and was generating new business.

Reid said it would be "extremely unfair" to dismiss turnover increases as the result of rising premium rates and no more. Premium rates were softening particularly in areas such as property, motor fleet and trade and small packages.