GREENOCK paper-broking business PG Paper saw its pre-tax profits rise by almost 150 per cent in the year to the end of March thanks to its further expansion into overseas markets.

The firm buys paper directly from mills around the world and sells it on to be used in industries such as printing and packaging.

After pre-tax profits fell by 50 per cent in the 2015/16 year the figure rose by 147 per cent to £1.4 million in the year to the end of March, taking it beyond the £1.1m it achieved in the year before the drop.

Chief executive Poonam Gupta, who founded the business in 2003 with her husband Puneet, said the directors “are pleased to report continuing profitability amongst some challenging trading conditions”.

The uplift was achieved after the business reported a 75 per cent increase in turnover to £39.5m.

This came after the company more than doubled the number of countries it trades in over the past two years. In 2015 PG Paper did business in 24 countries; that number has since risen to 52.

In addition to targeting countries such as Mexico and Chile, the business is looking to expand its product range to drive further growth.

“We hope to be able to expand our sales through the introduction of new products in the next 12 months,” Ms Gupta said.