M&E consultant Norman Disney & Young uses London as base to start worldwide expansion
Ambitious Australian engineer Norman Disney & Young has set up an office in London.

The firm, which intends to rival leading mechanical and electrical services firms such as Ove Arup & Partners and Roger Preston & Partners, has taken its first step outside the Asia-Pacific region by opening an office in Old Street, central London.

The office will service the European market. It has 25 staff at present, although ND&Y plans to double this figure by the end of next year. A number of senior staff, including several from Australia, have been transferred to the British office; the managing director for European operations is Tony Lukic.

The platform for the firm’s expansion will come from a deal to provide building services for US telecommunications company Level Communications, which is also moving into Europe.

Commenting on the deal, Ian Hopkins, chairman and chief executive of ND&Y, said: “Because we have expertise in services associated with communications facilities, we will use that as a base to get established.

But after that, we want to expand into all our other areas.”

There certainly seems to be a high level of activity in the UK for the medium term

Ian Hopkins, ND&Y

He said ND&Y was looking at offices, retail, leisure, entertainment and hospital developments. He wants the group to win a number of major projects as well as obtaining “bread and butter” work on smaller developments.

The company, which is based in Sydney, has five offices in Australia, and has already opened others in New Zealand, Malaysia and Indonesia.

It now has an annual turnover of around £14.3m and employs 300 staff worldwide.

Among the major projects that ND&Y has worked on is the 20 000-seat Superdome for the Sydney Olympics. Its subsidiary, Engineered Solutions Australia, has carried out millennium bug survey work for Lend Lease on the Bluewater retail complex in Kent.

Hopkins said that this week’s purchase of Bovis by fellow Australians Lend Lease could prove to be advantageous for ND&Y as it has completed work for both companies.