Henry Boot to cut construction jobs

Grant Prior 1 year ago
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Henry Boot is restructuring its construction division with jobs set to go as workloads struggle to recover from the pandemic.

The Enquirer understands that 19 people are affected with redundancies to start this week.

The impact of Covid-19 on the business saw construction make a pre-tax loss of £691,000 from a turnover of £55.6m for the six months to June 30.

In the same period last year construction made a pre-tax profit of £5.4m from £60.8m turnover.

Across the group pre-tax profits were down to £7.2m in the first half from £24.1m last time on a turnover reduced to £108.7m from £189m.

Chairman Jamie Boot said: “Although activity levels within our operations are increasing, we are not confident that levels will equal those seen pre-CV-19, for some time. On that basis we have made the difficult decision to undertake restructuring plans, which will result in redundancies in the construction division.

“Due to the impact of CV-19 we are anticipating a reduction in private sector opportunities later in the year, which may lead to a risk of tightening margins and we do not expect activity to achieve pre-pandemic levels in the short term.

“This, together with the need to ensure the business is fit for the future has resulted, unfortunately, in restructuring plans being implemented within the construction division.

“Despite CV-19 materially impacting Henry Boot Construction, we are well placed to weather this uncertainty through our substantial public sector client base and our presence on several public sector national and regional frameworks, where we expect spend on construction projects will be maintained in the short term to pump prime the general economy.”

Construction is its largest division ahead of property investment and development and land promotion.

Chief Executive Officer Tim Roberts said: “The first half of the year has proved to be very challenging for all of us, but with an agile recovery plan and a robust balance sheet Henry Boot remains in a strong position.

While CV-19 has affected our interim results and led us to make difficult decisions to reshape and protect the business, we have seen clear improvements in our operations.

“As this momentum builds, we have been quick to secure selective long-term opportunities and make progress in our key markets – residential, industrial and urban development.

“We are prepared for uncertain times ahead but where we see good opportunities to invest, without taking undue risk, we will continue to take them.

I would like to thank all of the Group’s employees for their dedicated hard work during this unprecedented period, whose efforts have helped keep the business viable and produced a robust set of results, which are creditable given the circumstances we are in.”                

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