Beard weathers Covid to report strong first half

Aaron Morby 3 years ago
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Family-run contractor Beard managed to keep the business on track during the first six months of this year, ending the period with a head of work in excess of £100m.

Chairman Mark Beard says the firm is paying its subcontractors in an average of just 26 days
Chairman Mark Beard says the firm is paying its subcontractors in an average of just 26 days

The private firm has published half-year results for the first time in response to the exceptional challenges from the pandemic.

Sales for the period remained stable at £72m (H1 2019: £75.3m) with pre-tax profits of £1.4m (H1 2019: £1.7m).

Beard ended the first six-months to June with a strong cash balance up nearly £8m to £37.4m and zero debt on its books.

This was driven by strong progress and several project completions, a focus on securing retention releases and the adoption of cash protection measures.

Despite the hard lockdown from March until June, Beard completed a total of 31 projects, including the Swindon Carriage Works and a training facility for Premiership Rugby club Bristol Bears.

This was delivered on time and on budget in spite of the restrictions placed on the project as a result of Covid-19.

This year the company has taken a strategic approach to focus on education, healthcare and heritage and has also moved into new sectors such as care homes.

Despite the pandemic, it has had a strong run on winning new work. This included the University of Oxford’s Rhodes House development worth £24m and two developments for Signature Care Homes across the South East worth £25m.

Chairman Mark Beard said: “Our results show that our balance sheet remains very strong and we have a healthy cash position.

“It has never been more difficult to predict the year ahead. However, we are confident that these results demonstrate our financial resilience and the long-term sustainability of the business.

“So, we can look ahead to 2021 with a good level of confidence.”

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