Construction firm builds 46% rise in pre-tax profits

Leeds construction firm Lovell has contributed to the year-end results of parent company Morgan Sindall, which has this morning announced a 45% rise in pre-tax profits to £66.1m for 2017.

Construction and infrastructure company Morgan Sindall, which has its headquarters in Rugby, and regional offices  in Leeds, Manchester and Cumbria said its overall Group achieved a 46% uplift in pre-tax profits, which stood at  £66.1m, up from £45.3m in 2016.

Revenues rose to £2.7m, up 9% from £2.9m in the previous year. The Group ended 2017 with a net cash position of £193m, down from £209m in 2016.The Group’s order book was also up 6% to £3.8bn.

As part of the Morgan Sindall parent company, Lovell, based in Gildersome, Leeds delivered 1,757 new-build homes in 2017. Lovell’s combined national forward order book and regeneration pipeline now stands at £1.4bn.

Its major Yorkshire and East Midlands homes projects include: A £30m waterside residential development in Doncaster, which will create 147 homes; In Belle Isle, south Leeds, Lovell is nearing completion of a £3.5m development of 33 affordable rented homes; A 73-home £13.2m development at Branston, Lincolnshire; An £11.8m development in  Chapel-en-le-Frith in Derbyshire; In Hull, Lovell is working on the £9.3m latest phase of a major regeneration development creating nearly 800 new homes in the Ings area; In Greetham, north Rutland, a £9m homes development.

Lovell regional managing director Robert Adams said: “The outlook for 2018 is highly encouraging as we continue to build urgently needed homes across the region. Our Eastern region forward order book currently stands at over £100 million with the company set to complete 150 new homes this year in Yorkshire and the East Midlands.”

Urban regeneration and property development company Muse Developments, which has offices in Leeds, moved forward on 18 projects with a total construction value of £400m in 2017. The company  expects a further £420m of contract awards over the next 12 months has an order book and development pipeline at £2.2bn.

Key projects for Muse Developments in Leeds and Yorkshire include: Construction of three industrial units, totalling 100,000 sq ft, at the Logic Leeds manufacturing and distribution development; A second phase of a 43 home development in Doncaster town centre; A deal agreed between English Cities Fund (ECf) and LocatED will see a new Performing Arts College developed on the last remaining plot at Wakefield’s Merchant Gate scheme.

David Wells, regional director for Yorkshire, the North East and East Midlands at Muse Developments, said: “2017 was another strong year of working closely with our partners to deliver major regeneration schemes, creating vibrant and sustainable new places. We’ve seen some significant milestones achieved on a range of schemes across Yorkshire, the North East and East Midlands.”

Morgan Sindall’s wider group in the North region is delivering a £46m Arts and Humanities building for Manchester Metropolitan University. The flagship project involves the construction of a 133,472 sq ft development on the corner of Oxford Road and Cavendish Street.

In Liverpool, the company is on-site making progress on two projects worth a combined total of £47 million as part of the local authority’s Paddington Village scheme – part of a planned £1bn extension to Liverpool’s Knowledge Quarter. The work was procured through the North West Construction Hub framework and is part of the local authority’s vision to build on Liverpool’s thriving life science sector, attracting investment, creating knowledge-intensive jobs and cementing the city region as an international destination of significance for the life-science, healthcare and technology industries.

Morgan Sindall also recently completed the Priority Schools Building Programme’s (PSBP) £110 million North West batch for the Education Funding Agency (EFA). The programme of work has seen the company transform 12 schools in Blackpool, Chester, Wigan, Manchester, Stockport and Merseyside, under a contract awarded to a Morgan Sindall Investments/Equitix consortium in August 2014. Morgan Sindall’s high-quality standardised MySchool solution proved ideal for requirements and delivered efficiencies that enabled the EFA to save £34.9 million.

In addition, Morgan Sindall successfully delivered Merseyside Police’s new £48m Operational Command Centre (OCC) on the Estuary Business Park in Speke. The new three-storey building will house the Serious and Organised Crime Centre and will enable all the teams that make up Merseyside Police’s Matrix and Serious and Organised (MSOC) unit to be brought together under one roof.

The Infrastructure team continues its water network upgrade and enhancement works for Yorkshire Water as part of its Asset Management Period 2015 – 2020 framework. In 2017, the team completed an £18m scheme at Saltend Wastewater Treatment Works.

In the nuclear sector, the Infrastructure business is undertaking work for BAE Systems as part of their 8 year re-development programme to regenerate the BAE Systems Submarines site at Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria. This includes a £67m contract awarded in July 2016 to extend the 269-metre-long Devonshire Dock Hall.

Meanwhile, at the start of this year, Morgan Sindall’s Highways team was awarded, in joint venture, two contracts worth a total of £322 million to deliver part of Highways England’s smart motorway programme. The first contract, a two-stage design and build scheme worth £104 million, is to upgrade 10 miles of the M62 between Warrington (J10) and Manchester (J12). Construction is due to begin in spring 2018.

Pat Boyle, Morgan Sindall’s managing director for Construction, said: “This sound financial performance is a result of our commitment to delivering high quality projects and exceptional customer service. With this continued approach, we are optimistic for the future and look forward to building on this success in 2018.”