Construction loss dampens Eric Wright profits

Aaron Morby 4 years ago
Share

Another year of losses at Eric Wright’s Construction arm dented the Lancashire group’s overall profits last year.

Jeremy Hartley, managing director of Eric Wright Group says demand has proved resilient so far this year
Jeremy Hartley, managing director of Eric Wright Group says demand has proved resilient so far this year

Eric Wright Group saw pre-tax profit fall by nearly a quarter to £7.7m despite revenue rising almost a third to £223m.

The rise in revenue last year was principally driven by greater activity in the civil engineering, water and construction businesses.

Gill Chadwick, Eric Wright Group finance director, said: “Although we have seen a drop in overall profit, underlying trading remained strong with improved profitability in a number of key divisions.

“While general economic conditions during 2019 continued to create challenges, the  stability afforded by our diversity and the strength of performance from our investment property portfolio provided us with substantial resilience and gives us confidence for the future, notwithstanding the unprecedented place we all found ourselves in as 2020 began to unfold.

“The property portfolio again performed well with a number of new lettings and positive rent reviews, contributing to an improved rent roll.”

But the construction division continued to face industry-wide challenges and completed two underperforming contracts which resulted in a loss, despite revenue rising to £106m (2018: £74.1m).

Construction ended the year with an order book in excess of £100m.

Eric Wright Civil Engineering returned to profit as a result of the board’s strategy to improve turnover levels through expanding the customer base and increasing average project size.

Eric Wright Water also saw an increase in turnover to £50m (2018: £42m), with profit before tax of £0.7m (2018: £0.2m) reflecting continued expansion of the businesses geographical reach.

Maple Grove Developments continued to make good progress developing commercial property across the North, with profit before tax up to £1.8m from £1.1m in 2018.

Jeremy Hartley, managing director of Eric Wright Group, said: “Given the unforeseen and far-reaching difficulties presented in 2020 by Covid-19, each division is faced with its own unique challenges as we trade into a very changed world.

“We are fortunate to operate in a number of sectors where the demand has proved resilient and we have a strong financial position which will support us as we adjust to the requirements of trading safely and successfully in the months ahead.”

Latest news

McLaren gets green light for 45-storey Leeds tower

Landmark Wellington Square scheme will see 464 flats built with 360,000 sq ft of offices
1 day ago

Heavy rain causes 1.9% construction output fall

Hopes remain undampened of a resi-led recovery this summer
1 day ago

Taziker restruture to return to profitability after £1.2m loss

Founders bought the business back from private equity after last year's loss
1 day ago

£220m London wharf homes scheme approved

285 homes to be built beside protected Albert and Swedish Wharves in Wandsworth
1 day ago

Major project veteran named civils director for Sizewell C

David Speight previously worked on Hinkley, Heathrow and HS2 client teams
1 day ago

Morgan Sindall lands £19m Milton Keynes hospital job

Crane lifts to be carefully co-ordinated to ensure air ambulance remains active
2 days ago

Clancy bolsters civils leadership team

Daniel Tonkin and Simon Hyams join as operation directors of water and infrastructure
2 days ago

Balfour names new project boss for HS2’s super-hub station

Steve O’Sullivan replaces Nigel Russell who was promoted to CEO of Balfour's HS2 ops
2 days ago

Buckingham Group supply chain hit doubles to £256m

Total owed to unsecured creditors soars as surety providers finalise claims
2 days ago

Builders demand an end to police plant bans

Call to suspend all embargoes on moving mobile cranes and large site kit
2 days ago

Green light for £65m Blackpool multiversity campus

Education campus of 350,000 sq ft will be delivered in phases
2 days ago

Vinci signs £138m Sheffield steel forge expansion deal

Sheffield Forgemasters signs landmark contract after two years of pre-construction works
3 days ago

McAlpine hires HS2 programme boss to head defence arm

Armed forces logistics expert Mike Hickson takes role as MD of defence
3 days ago

£200m carbon capture plan for Deeside site

Energy from waste operator enfinium looking to invest in North Wales plant
2 days ago

McAleer & Rushe promotes five staff to contracts directors

Design and build contractor targets £500m revenue next year
3 days ago

Consultant quartet win Government estate upgrade deal

Government Property Agency selects Arcadis, Tetra Tech, AtkinsRéalis and McBains
3 days ago

Resi towers pioneer to transform Liverpool site

Beetham founder Hugh Frost to help develop 1,200 new homes
4 days ago

Construction Manager of the Year crowned

Galliford Try's Barry Kingscote wins coveted prize: Full list of winners
3 days ago

Landsec £250m London terraced office job approved

Skanska tipped for 20-storey Hill House scheme near Fleet Street
4 days ago

Lendlease tops March contracts league

BAM and ISG rank third with big contract wins
3 days ago

Vistry strikes deal with Homes England for 1,000 units

Firm's timber frames factory will supply most of the Midlands houses
3 days ago

Morgan Sindall go-ahead to build 23-storey Salford resi job

Funding deal with CBRE allows latest project on bank of River Irwell to proceed
4 days ago

Unite Students gains planning for London and Bristol schemes

RG Group will build landmark Stratford tower and Freestone Island projects
4 days ago

Rolls-Royce gets go-ahead for 1.1m sq ft expansion in Derby

Major expansion of Raynesway campus planned to met submarine fleet orders
4 days ago

GMI Construction edges back into profit

A year of controlled consolidation helped generate £0.9m profit but cash at bank dropped to £10m
4 days ago

Balfour gets final sign-off for HMP Highland at £209m

Deal struck for delayed Inverness prison after costs rocket
5 days ago

Renew buys bridge maintenance business

Contractor boosts highways division with £5m acquisition
4 days ago

HS2 tests market for £150m mass transit job

2.4km long elevated Automated People Mover to go out to tender in 2026
4 days ago

Cardo completes fourth acquisition in a year

Expanding Welsh building maintenance specialist reaches £170m turnover
5 days ago

Watchdog clears Heidelberg takeover of Mick George

Four quarries and five ready-mix operations to be sold to meet competition concerns
5 days ago

Contractor services