Construction portal Asite this week posted a pre-tax loss of £8.4m for 2001.
Group chairman Sir John Egan said the result was largely the result of heavy start-up costs and a restructuring that led to the disposal of several non-core businesses. The results follow Asite's £3.5m loss in 2000.

In the year to 31 December 2001, turnover fell to £4.5m compared with £11.2m in 2000. Excluding the hived-off business, the remaining group turnover was £307,000.

Egan said that in spite of the results the group had made good progress during 2001, and was well-placed for growth.

He said: "While recognising the significant challenges ahead, the board expects Asite to build on this position during 2002 and sees strong potential for the creation of shareholder value in the future."

The restructuring of the group, which included changes in senior management, was finalised by the disposal of Asite's non-core businesses. In March 2001, it sold architect Whinney Mackay Lewis to architect Woods Bagot UK and the existing management team for £500,000.

Services group Foremans was sold to Barry Shaw and Richard Kennedy in a management buy-out in June last year for a cash consideration of £1.2m. And in December, the group disposed of property management firm Prime Estates to BC Plaza for £800,000.

Asite floated on the alternative investment market last summer, a move that raised £4.5m. A number of high-profile organisations have taken an equity interest in Asite, and use its services on their projects. They include BAA, British Land, J Sainsbury, Standard Life, Mace and O'Rourke.