Seddon Construction returns to profit

The construction arm of Bolton-based Seddon Group edged back into profit last year following 2022’s £15m loss blamed on construction inflation and subcontractor failures

Chief executive Jonathan Seddon said the construction arm was maintaining a conscious limit on the number of large contracts it entered into while growing specialist workstreams with shorter project times.

He said this year would see further progress in the creation of four distinct business units within Seddon Construction: Housing Partnerships, Property Services, Engineering Services, and Painting and Maintenance.

Each now has a distinct senior management team and has been provided with an increased degree of autonomy and agility to drive growth within an overall governance framework.

Last year the construction arm raised revenue by 4% to £155m, generating a small pre-tax profit of £200,000.

But headcount at construction slipped back to 450 after some cuts to overheads.

“The outlook for 2024 is good with around 80% of our order book secured and with a number of other projects identified which we are confident can also be secured and taken to site in the coming months,” he said.

“Continued investment and focus on our painting, maintenance, refurbishment and decarbonisation divisions has resulted in further growth.

“These works operate with contracts of much shorter duration than typical new-build schemes and are therefore far less affected by the inflationary pressures seen elsewhere in the business.

“This supports the underlying strategy over the last four years to continue to grow these parts of the business such that they represent an increasingly higher proportion of our annual turnover.

“Additionally, we have continued to invest in the future of our Social Housing business, with a number of senior appointments made during the year across the key areas of operations and delivery, commercial and business.

He added: “Despite volatile conditions over the last four years, a combination of financial strength and liquidity has provided the group with the confidence to continue to invest in the future as we seek to maintain a competitive advantage in what is a challenging period for the industry.”

The Seddon Group as a whole fared better delivering a £4.6m pre-tax profit on revenue of £166m, helped by returns from joint ventures.

Cash almost doubled to £2om at the year-end from £12m previously.



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