Yusen Logistics said a series of new business wins and a client base in recession proof markets will help it boost turnover by £20 million year-on-year in the UK.

Chief executive Ian Veitch said: “It is fair to say it has been a challenging year for the industry. We are about a week from year end and unless there is a serious pick-up it has been quite a good year for us.

Veitch expects Yusen to finish the year £20 million up compared to the financial year ending 31 March 2012 with pre-tax profit up about 6%. He singled out customers including Tesco, Arcadia and B&Q as part of a series of new business wins.

“Revenue up; profits up; sales up and signings up," said Veitch. "We have been helped by having a large exposure to automotive and pharmaceutical sectors. While retail has been a big target in the past we have benefited from not having the scale in the market we once hoped for.

“Pharmaceutical has grown and by and large it is recession proof. It has done very well,” he added. Yusen renewed its contract with AstraZeneca earlier this month.