G4S and Sodexo compete for a £225m contract to manage a women’s jail in Australia
G4S chief executive Ashley Almanza said his turnaround programme was 'delivering tangible results' Reuters

G4S saw profits jump in its first half of the year as the security and outsourcing firm sold off divisions as part of its turnaround plan. It said pre-tax profits lifted by 44% to £115m ($150m) in the six months to the end of June compared to a year ago, as the group sold off seven units in the period for £32m.

The group, which employs 610,000 staff in over 100 countries, has been streamlining itself under chief executive Ashley Almanza after a series of scandals and overexpansion under the previous management.

G4S saw its reputation dented by a failure to provide enough security guards at the London 2012 Olympics and for overcharging for the electronic tagging of offenders.

The group said it has sold a total of 25 divisions for £288m since 2013, and is in the process of selling 38 more businesses with combined revenues of £610m. It added that during the period it won new contracts with a total value of £1.4bn.

Almanza said his turnaround programme was "delivering tangible results".

He added: "We have much to do to realise the full potential of our strategy which is underpinned by our growth, innovation, productivity and portfolio programmes."