UPDATE 1-Serco on track for growth despite turmoil hitting British outsourcers

outsourcers@ (Adds details, comment from CEO)

EDINBURGH, Feb 22 (Reuters) - Britain's Serco said it expected to emerge as one of the winners from the turmoil hitting the outsourcing sector after it reported 2017 results in line with forecasts and predicted profit growth for the next two years.

Serco, which provides justice, transport, defence and welfare services for governments across the world, is in the latter stages of a five-year restructuring, started after it ran into the kind of problems which led to the demise of its peer Carillion in January.

Chief Executive Rupert Soames said the actions it has taken should put it in a stronger position than others in the sector who are also grappling with a downturn in demand, such as Capita and Interserve.

"We understand that getting to this point has been a long haul for investors, and that there is still a long, and probably bumpy, road ahead before we are producing acceptable returns. But we are now moving forward, not backward," Chief Executive Rupert Soames said in a statement.

"This environment may produce opportunities for suppliers with strong track records of delivery."

Serco reported revenue down 2 percent to 2.95 billion pounds ($4.09 billion)in 2017 while underlying trading profit fell to 69.8 million pounds, at the top end of guidance which was upgraded in December.

Revenues in 2018 were expected to be 2.8 to 2.9 billion pounds, underlying trading profit to grow to around 80 million pounds, driven largely by cost savings, and it said it expected further good profit growth in 2019. ($1 = 0.7207 pounds) (Reporting by Elisabeth O'Leary; editing by Kate Holton)