MJ Gleeson’s former contracting arm becomes GB Building Solutions and posts £908,000 profit

The former contracting arm of MJ Gleeson this week unveiled an ambitious three-year growth plan as it announced it is finally dropping the Gleeson name.

Gleeson Building, formed after a buyout from its troubled parent in 2005 (see box), is rebranding as GB Building Solutions.

Martin Smout, the chief executive who led the buyout, said it had made a £908,000 pre-tax profit for the year ended 31 June 2007, an eightfold increase on the figures for the previous period. Turnover was £177.5m.

Smout said it aimed for a further 25% growth this year and forecast a £1.4m profit on a turnover of £225m. The company then aims for a further 15% growth each year for the next two years, reaching a £7.3m profit in 2010 on a £300m turnover.

Smout said the firm, whose main markets are in the education, residential and health sectors, was confident despite toughening market conditions. He said: “We seem to be weathering the market uncertainty well. Our work is split roughly 50-50 between public and private sectors, which helps with risk.”

He said expanding its development business was still his main focus, ahead of increasing its presence in PFI markets, where it has acted as a contractor but has not yet formed part of a special purpose vehicle.

Smout said that it wanted to drop the Gleeson name rather than wait for the expiry of the licence for its use this summer. MJ Gleeson retains a 20% stake in the company.

Birth of a company

March 2005 MJ Gleeson plans to offload building division after a £16.6m loss

July 2005 Martin Smout, director of the building division, leads buyout. Smout, commercial director Peter Stone, and finance director Michael Lethaby each put in £80,000 for an 80% stake in the company.