Contractor says acquisitions and investment will see £340m cash pile fall

Balfour Beatty will see its cash reserves fall as it ploughs more money in to selective acquisitions and growing the business organically.

In a trading update to the city today, the firm said it was hitting expectations, and would make more of its profits in the second half of the year. The acquisition last week of US contractor Howard S. Wright for £58m will see it grow it order forward order book.

Howard S. Wright had turnover last year of £257m and a forward order book of £432m. Balfour Beatty reported net cash of £340m in May.

Today’s statement said: “We continue to use our strong balance sheet to invest in our business in order to drive organic growth, improve operational performance and cost-effectiveness and build capability through selective acquisitions such as Howard S. Wright. These factors, combined with fluctuations in working capital, are expected to result in a reduction in the net cash position.”