The privately owned group behind the out-of-town Trago Mills shopping centres enjoyed a leap in profits in 2014 despite relatively flat sales.

Charles Robertson Holdings — which consolidates the accounts of Trago Mills retail centres at Liskeard, Newton Abbot and Falmouth — grew profits by 33.8 per cent to £3.2m in the year to end December.

Sales were up 0.8 per cent to £75.8m, with lower administrative costs and improved gross margin behind most of the improvement in earnings for the South West retailer.

The group, which has no debt, grew year-end cash to £45.2m (2013: £42.5m).

Trago Mills has a longstanding plan to build a fourth site, with development work ongoing on land it owns on the outskirts of Merthyr in South Wales.

Trago Mills — which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year — carries a full non-food product line including furniture, floorcoverings and furnishings.