House builder rebuilds revenues to pre-pandemic levels

House builder Persimmon saw revenues rebuilt close to pre-pandemic levels last year and it is confident about its prospects for 2022.

The York-headquartered group delivered revenues of £3.61bn in 2021 – up 8% on 2020 and just 1% behind 2019.

Persimmon’s group chief executive Dean Finch said: “Persimmon’s performance has been excellent through the year, delivering high quality growth.”

It has entered the new year with a strong order book, with total forward sales of £1.62bn being 20% higher than two years earlier.

Dean Finch

Finch added: “We have continued to secure high quality land opportunities, bringing over 20,500 new plots into the business in 2021 representing in excess of 140% of current consumption levels. This strong pipeline provides excellent momentum for the group’s future growth.

“Whilst the industry continues to face the ongoing operational and economic challenges as a consequence of the pandemic, particularly as the Omicron outbreak unfolded in the last six weeks of the year, the group continues to manage these ongoing challenges comprehensively.”

New home legal completions of 14,551 were 7% ahead of the previous year and included 12,018 new homes sold to private owner occupiers.

The group delivered 2,533 new homes to its housing association partners, representing more than one-in-six homes delivered.

At the end of the year, Persimmon had 290 developments under construction across the UK, which it says reflects the combined effect of both healthy sales rates and delays in the planning process.

The company noted it has managed the ongoing challenges of the pandemic well, including disruption to the supply chain and customer support services which increased in the latter part of 2021 with the onset of the new Omicron variant.

Its update said: “The corresponding updated Government guidance has led to a pick-up in sickness related absenteeism, with some customers also choosing to delay moving into their new home as they isolated in line with best advice.”

Persimmon has appointed Aviva’s group CFO Jason Windsor as its chief financial officer, replacing Mike Killoran who is retiring after more than 25 years with the property group.

Killoran will leave Persimmon tomorrow, with chief executive Finch overseeing finance until Windsor’s arrival in the summer.