Willmott Dixon posts solid profit growth

Willmott Dixon, the privately owned contracting company, publishes its accounts for the 12 months to 31 December 2016

2016 Financial Highlights:

  • 97% rise in profit before tax & amortisation at £31.1 million (2015: £15.8 million)
  • Turnover at £1.22 billion (2015: £1.33 billion) consistent with our stated ambition to prioritise quality over quantity
  • Shareholders’ Funds of £177.3 million (2015: £174.1 million)
  • Cash and Bank balances of £81.2 million (2015: £80.2 million)

Read our accounts here

Company Highlights so far in 2017

  • Fortem and Be Living brands successfully launched and de-merged from Willmott Dixon
  • Secured forward order book at £1 billion (at May 2017)
  • 90% of budgeted work secured for 2017 (at May 2017)
  • Appointed to refurbish Old Admiralty Building as new home for Department for Education
  • Highest placed contractor in Sunday Times Best Companies list at number 14
  • Retaining Carbon Neutral status - unmatched by any other contractor
  • Chosen as Scape’s partner on National Construction Framework with potential contract volumes up to £2.25 billion
  • Southern Construction Framework’s contractor of the year
  • Appointed for second expansion by Coventry University, this time creating the CU London campus
  • Implementing strategy to integrate residential contracting within the general construction operation

Willmott Dixon’s Group Chief Executive Rick Willmott says: “This has been a good, solid performance in 2016. A year when our contracting businesses have delivered strong, predictable results and where our residential development and support services companies have been positioned with greater independence for the future.”

“This year will see concentration on our core contracting activity, making sure that we continue to shape Willmott Dixon to stay close to our customers, both private and public, and by serving their evolving needs. This particularly relates to our residential construction proposition, where the nature of projects is changing, with private housing developers, local authorities and housing associations creating ever more high density, mixed-tenure and mixed-use developments.

These opportunities are often ‘bundled’ as a series of projects that allow customers to work in partnership with companies like us to accelerate delivery.”

New approach

“The residential contracting market has evolved materially and we’re seeing a growing number of customers wanting to migrate relationships with current operational teams, who have delivered commercial or education projects for example, on to residential build contracts instead of being introduced to a new team from a different part of the business.*

“To ensure we are best positioned to deal with this strong and vibrant market opportunity, we need to change the way we operate by integrating our residential expertise and capability into our national Construction business from July. This will see our residential projects and teams progressively migrate to their local Construction office to better enable us to provide a seamless service with scope to expand across the whole country.

“This also fits neatly with our portfolio of national and local frameworks, including Scape where we are a partner on the new National Construction Framework with the potential for work volumes of £2.25b over the next four years, and the Southern Construction Framework, where we have the accolade of being its Contractor of the Year. Having consistency of operational structure, leadership and direction will absolutely reinforce our ability to deliver best in class performance for all our customers.”

Looking to the future

“I’ve always maintained Willmott Dixon’s ability to grow and succeed is down to our readiness to adapt in an ever changing market. Integrating our residential contracting business into our Construction arm led by chief operating officer John Waterman will give us more flexibility to meet the needs of our customers.”

Note:

The 2016 results include activities for Be Living and Fortem. From 2017, these companies will report separately following their demerger from Willmott Dixon.

*examples to illustrate this point:

  • work with Crest Nicholson in Southampton
  • creating new homes for St Albans City Council
  • Cubex appointment for build to rent homes at Finzels Reach in Bristol
  • working with Westminster City Council to create a school, church and housing at Dudley House
  • delivering a joint housing and leisure facility for Be Living at Moberly in Westminster