Strong growth in infrastructure partially offsets sharp falls in revenue at fit out and regeneration divisions

Pre-tax profit at construction giant Morgan Sindall fell by nearly a third in 2009 after revenues at its fit out and urban regeneration divisions collapsed in the recession.

John Morgan
Morgan: Very satisfactory performance

Pre-tax profit was £44.7m, down 28% on the £62.3m recorded in 2008. The company saw revenue fall by 13%, to £2.21bn, from £2.55bn in 2008.

Turnover fell at all Morgan Sindall divisions, but the dramatic drop in profits was caused largely by the collapse in the fit-out and urban regeneration sectors. Turnover for the fit-out business, which includes Overbury, fell by 39% to £291m, with profits of £13.8m down 47% on 2008. Profits at the urban regeneration business, Muse, were down by 90% to just £0.7m, after revenues fell 62% to £32m.

Other businesses performed more solidly, with affordable housing turnover remaining broadly stable at £374m (2008: £377m). Morgan Est, the firm’s infrastructure business, was the only division to increase profits, up 19% to £17.1m on turnover of £770m.

John Morgan, executive chairman, said the results were a “very satisfactory performance” in difficult trading conditions. He said: “We remain in a strong financial position and are well placed to take advantage of the opportunities which the market will present.

The markets in 2010 will be similar to those we experienced in 2009 but we remain confident of making good progress throughout the year."