Firm saw jobs stopped ahead of last June’s EU referendum
Farrells has admitted that uncertainty in the run-up to last June’s EU referendum hit workloads and profit in its latest financial results.
The firm, which the year before turned in an improved set of results, saw its numbers for turnover and pre-tax profit head south in 2016 as uncertainty caused by the referendum and the London mayoral elections took hold.
Documents filed at Companies House by Terry Farrell Holdings show that revenue was down 10% to £7.9m in the year to March 2016 while pre-tax profit halved to £1.4m.
In a statement signed by director Terry Farrell, the firm said: “[Income dropped] largely due to existing projects in the UK moving slowly or pausing whilst clients took stock of the unique political environment.”
It added that the “directors maintained staffing levels in anticipation of major existing projects re-commencing in the first quarter of the new financial year [which] impacted operating profit”.
Farrells said all its revenue came from the UK but in its statement, the firm added: “The long term commitment and investment in China continues to show improved returns, where the business expertise in tall building, mixed-use and cultural projects sees the practice engage as masterplanners and architectural designers”.
A Farrells spokesman said that since its year end, projects which had stopped had now restarted and added: “The practice has won a number of significant new projects. As a result, we have increased headcount by over 20% and continue to invest in our staff and technology. The trading environment remains challenging but the pipeline for the year ahead looks healthy.”
UK schemes the firm is working on include the redevelopment of Earls Court in west London as well the first commercial office phase of the Royal Albert Docks mixed-use scheme (pictured) in east London for its Chinese developer ABP.
The number of staff at the business at the year end edged up to 91 from 84 with its wage bill rising £300,000 to £3.9m.
Farrell and his wife Mei Xin Wang are listed as the sole directors of the business and the pair were paid a dividend of just over £767,000 during the period.