£80m in Rok contracts sold off to company run by former Multiplex directors, saving 40 jobs

London-based contractor Primus will more than double in size after picking up about £80m of contracts from collapsed firm Rok.

Primus, led by Martin Tidd, who in his former role as UK MD of Multiplex oversaw much of the work on the troubled construction of Wembley Stadium, last week finalised a deal to buy the contracts, and 40 Rok staff, for less than £1m.

Tidd said he has been in contact with Rok’s administrators, PwC, over the contracts since Rok’s collapse in November last year.

e said: “This will more than double our current turnover, taking us to around £70m this year and possibly around £90m in 2012. We’ve been looking for a regional business to buy - we had a look at Verry and Haymills, but they weren’t right.

“There are a very good bunch of guys here, and it’s a shame they got brought down by the demise of the rest of Rok.”

Tidd said the purchase of the contracts would expand Primus’s reach outside London into the Home Counties and south coast, and also give it several public sector contracts. He added that most of the clients had already agreed to novate the contracts to Primus.

The contracts, from Rok’s London and South-east business, are separate from the South-east housing contracts sold to Mansell for £7m in the week after Rok’s collapse. The deal will mean Primus takes on Rok’s Heathrow office.

Primus was set up three years ago by a number of former directors of Multiplex, now Brookfield. It turned over £25m in 2008 but this fell to £16.5m in 2009, the most recent year for which accounts are available.

An industry source said: “That looks like a really good bit of business. They’ve done well to keep it under wraps.”

The news comes as Mears this week confirmed it had spent £1.5m buying up contracts from Rok in the Bristol area. Contractor ISG has also taken on £100m of former Rok contracts in Scotland.