Wates sees order book swell to record £5.1bn

Grant Prior 9 months ago
Share

The Wates Group continued to avoid problem contracts which have dogged many of its rivals as the family-owned contractor posted rising profits and turnover.

Acting chief executive David Allen said this year is ahead of budget on all fronts

Latest accounts for the year ended 31 December 2017 show revenue up 5.9% to £1.62bn from £1.53bn last time as pre-tax profits edged-up 0.7% to £35.7m from £35.5m.

The order book at Wates hit a record £5.1bn from £3.6bn as the company continued to maintain a strong cash position with £169.5m in the bank at year end.

Pre-tax profit margins dipped slightly to 2.2% as the company continued to take a prudent approach to accounting for returns on contracts.

Performance was strong across the business with increased turnover in the group’s three key sectors of construction, residential developments and property services.

Construction turnover was up 4.6% to £934.8m, property services rose 11% to £477.3m and residential developments turnover increased by 0.4% to £206.1m.

Acting chief executive David Allen said the firm was more focused now on profit but was “closing in” on its previous target of topping £2bn annual turnover.

Allen added: “It is early days but the current year is going well with profit and turnover ahead of budget.”

The company has also made 15 job offers to former Carillion staff having spoken to 174 of them and conducted 35 interviews since the firm’s collapse.

Allen has been in the acting chief executive role since last November when Andrew Davies announced he was leaving to head up Carillion – a job he never got the chance to start.

Allen said the chief executive role at Wates is “a fabulous job” and he would “love to do it.”

He added: “The board is undertaking the process to find the right person but there is no white smoke form the chimney yet.”

Chairman James Wates said:“These are really positive results for the Wates Group, demonstrating our continued success in what has been a challenging year for the sector.

“They attest to the quality and commitment of our people, the strength of our relationships with customers and partners, and our robust financial management.

“These results reflect our belief that profitability has to be linked to the long-term sustainability, not only of our company, but of the industry and the communities in which we work.

“In 2017 we continued to invest in social enterprises, spending £2.65m and remaining on course to spend a cumulative £20m by 2020.

“The Group employed 190 trainees and apprentices as well as providing training and learning opportunities for over 1,500 young people to help build the workforce of the future.

“Most importantly of all, we improved our industry-leading health and safety record.”

Latest news

Balfour Beatty delivers 2-3% construction margin goal

Leo Quinn hits phase two target of Build to Last turnaround plan
22 hours ago

Firms admit price-fixing of concrete drainage products

Precast firms took part in cartel for seven years
2 days ago

£300m Edgbaston mixed-use scheme advances

Phase one office project edges closer at New Garden Square regen scheme
22 hours ago

All JCB staff get £1000 Christmas bonus

Over 7,000 staff earn biggest Christmas bonus in a decade
21 hours ago

Robertson appoints Morgan Sindall director

Scott Wilson is now Robertson's business development director
2 days ago

Beeston leisure centre out to bid

Bidding starts on cinema project in £30m shops and 130 homes scheme
2 days ago

Scape MD to head Perfect Circle consortium

Victoria Bambini to lead AECOM, Pick Everard and Gleeds joint venture
2 days ago

EastEnders set rebuild soars £27m over budget

NAO slams BBC for planning failures and procurement delays
2 days ago

Spurs stadium delays continue into New Year

Man Utd match will be played at Wembley next month as contractors work through Christmas
2 days ago

Speedy buys construction training business for £9m

Plant hirer buys Glasgow-based Geason in construction training push
2 days ago

Summer start for £25m Carlisle flood defence plan

Flood defence plan to be revealed three years after storm Desmond hit
2 days ago

Amco wins Dunbar railway station upgrade

Work to start next summer on new platform and footbridge
2 days ago

Architects win post-Brexit talent deal

Designers win concessions but construction still in skills turmoil
3 days ago

Boost your online presence – join the Enquirer Directory

New site for suppliers and buyers showcases products, services and latest stories
8 months ago

Essex contractor collapses after posting record results

Bolt and Heeks Ltd in administratron with 55 job losses
3 days ago

Science park starts contractor hunt for £12m office scheme

Construction work up for grabs on trio of buildings near Liverpool
3 days ago

Hitachi to pull out of £14bn Anglesey nuclear power plant

Hitachi plans for Anglesey nuclear power plant now in doubt
3 days ago

M&E specialist Ameon replaces Imtech on Graham site

Subcontractor steps in to keep project on track
3 days ago

Marshalls to buy rival concrete brick maker

Marshalls to buy Edenhall for up to £17m
3 days ago

Argent gets go-ahead for major Tottenham Hale revamp

Contractor hunt to start soon with construction set to start next summer
4 days ago

Drylining boss banned for tax dodging

Insolvency Service investigators uncover huge CIS and VAT payment discrepancies
4 days ago

£2bn Elephant & Castle shopping centre scheme final go-ahead

Demolition to start after London mayor nods through vast scheme
4 days ago

Modular building specialist goes into administration

Timber accommodation pod maker Carbon Dynamic runs out of cash on major contract
4 days ago

Structural engineer crushed under scaffold tubes

Housing giant and scaffold contractor fined a total of £180,000
4 days ago

Consultant MHBC merges with Cumming

City of London based firm now part of global giant
4 days ago

Crossrail delayed again as costs rise by another £2bn

Mayor attacks previous management team who insisted project was "on time and on budget"
5 days ago

Top housing association hires Lendlease resi chief

Richard Cook will lead Clarion Group's ambitious development plans
5 days ago

UK’s tallest Premier Inn plan in Docklands

Premier Inn books in at 30-storey mixed resi and hotel scheme
4 days ago

Kier wins £45m Cambridge schools campus phase one

Northstowe education campus includes a new 1,800 pupil secondary
4 days ago

Ian Lawson to advise McLaren on growth plans

Former Severfield and Kier boss becomes consultant at expanding contractor
5 days ago

Contractor services