INDEPENDENT engineering firm Score Group has reported a 23% rise in profits as it continues to benefit from the buoyant oil and gas industry.

The Peterhead company, which operates around the world but also has Scottish bases in Fraserburgh, Cowdenbeath and Glenrothes, saw its turnover accelerate from £150.5 million to almost £180m for the 12 months to September 26, 2013.

UK turnover was up from £74.1m to £91.2m with Europe growing from £25.4m to £30.2m and the rest of world going from £50.1m to £58.5m.

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That rise in revenue helped its pre-tax profits grow from £6.5m to more than £8m according to accounts filed at Companies House.

The group, which is majority owned by entrepreneur Charles Ritchie, specialises in areas including valves, gas turbines and specialist coatings.

Writing in the accounts Mr Ritchie, chairman, said: "It has to be noted that this welcome increase in turnover and profit has principally been produced by our valve operations.

"While there are clouds on the horizon that significantly affect our overheads, it is currently the case that the energy and petrochemical markets are buoyant with record investment worldwide that will enable us to build on these results."

Staff numbers increased from 1341 to 1511 which pushed employee costs from £45.3m to £48.64m.

Directors' remuneration rose from £1.15m to almost £1.28m with the highest paid getting £360,000, up from £287,000.

Net debt narrowed from £5.15m to £4.9m.