Christmas Top of the Pops: Find out who came out on top in the construction industry over the last year
Home Builders’ Federation
The housebuilders’ lobby group has to be the year’s star act for having persuaded chancellor George Osborne of the need to launch Help to Buy despite signs the market was already recovering, causing a boom in profits for its members. It also lobbied for and secured further planning reforms in this month’s Autumn Statement.
The contractor is straight in at number two for emerging victorious from its £221m battle with Costain for contractor May Gurney.
The French-owned utility wins a place for persuading the government to halve the ECO programme, along with securing government underwriting of a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point, and a guaranteed price for the energy it produces. In return EDF hasn’t even had to commit to actually building the thing.
The council is a clear winner for the bonanza of planning receipts (and economic development benefits) it can expect from the rebuilding of Battersea Power Station. The support of Malaysian investors means the £8bn scheme has been able to kick off, ending three decades of disappointment.
In January the firms involved in constructing the 2012 Olympics venues and infrastructure secured a major victory after the government agreed to lift an injunction banning them from marketing their involvement in the project. The lifting of the “No Marketing Rights Protocol” was one of the key demands of Building’s 2012 campaign, with the RIBA and many others also campaigning on the issue.
Gardiner & Theobald
The consultant was a canny operator in 2013, making some key hires from rivals and enlarging its equity partnership by 20 to 143. Among the recruits were three directors from Aecom’s King’s Cross scheme - Alex Davey, Jon Eyles and David Elsmore - allowing the firm to pull off one of the year’s biggest coups by replacing Aecom on Google’s £300m UK headquarters job.
The chief executive of housebuilder Crest Nicholson (pictured) became a wealthy man as the firm made a stunning return to the stock market. The share price has rocketed over 60% since its February flotation, making his 2% personal stake worth more than £16m.
Contractor Bam Nuttall agreed to pay the council £33m in an out-of -court settlement over the troubled Cambridgeshire guided busway scheme, which was ultimately handed over two years late and £36m over budget.
Allford Hall Monaghan Morris
Profit at the London-based architect more than doubled as turnover rose 45%. However, it is the roster of projects won by the practice that makes it stand out - the redesigned BBC Television Centre, the New Scotland Yard building, British Land’s huge Shoreditch Estate scheme, and of course Google’s King’s Cross HQ.
The star of The Apprentice won praise from a High Court judge after a project he supported - the refurbishment of the Hackney Empire theatre - won a protracted legal fight with its insurers, which declined to pay out after the scheme’s contractor went bust. Sugar’s support enabled the theatre to take the insurer to court, and the judge awarded £1.6m, the bond cost plus interest.
Turner & Townsend
Building’s Consultant of the Year grew for the fourth straight financial year, while its UK business enjoyed its strongest 12 months since the credit crunch. T&T also picked up project manager roles on two landmark London schemes - phases one and two of the redevelopment of Battersea Power Station, together worth almost £1bn; and the £800m mixed-use Bishopsgate Goodsyard scheme in the City.
It was a dramatic year for others. It wouldn’t be Christmas without some family feuds in the industry. We said hello to some new people, and goodbye to others. There were some high-profile step-downs; we round up the highlights with our Christmas Jumpers feature.