Steelwork contractor to hand back £10m to shareholders

The country’s biggest steelwork contractor has said its next set of annual results will be better expected when they are published this summer.

Severfield said its numbers for the year to March 2024 will be “slightly above our previous expectations”.

It said year-end net debt would be better than predicted at around £10m, down from £18.4m last time, while the firm plans to hand back £10m to shareholders through a share buyback initiative.


The firm’s UK and Europe order book has topped £500m

In a brokers note, Liberum said it had raised its earnings per share forecast by 8% this year and by 5% in 2025.

Liberum said it expects underlying pre-tax profit to be £35.8m, a rise of 10% on last time, while revenue will be around £480m, a fall of 2% on 2022’s turnover. It will release its annual results on 19 June.

The firm, which has been carrying out the steelwork on Everton’s new stadium, said its order book in the UK and Europe at the start of the month was a record £511m, up from £482m at the start of November last year.

It added that its joint venture business in India was “well positioned to take advantage of a very encouraging outlook for the Indian economy and a strong underlying demand for structural steel in construction”.

The firm also said former Manchester Airports Group chief executive Charlie Cornish would take up the chairman’s role at the beginning of next month.

Cornish, who remains as chairman of MAG, replaces Kevin Whiteman who steps down having completed his nine year tenure.

Meanwhile, AIM-listed steelwork contractor Billington yesterday reported that revenue was up 53% to £132.5m last year with pre-tax profit more than doubling from £5.8m to £13.4m.

Chief executive Mark Smith said: “I believe Billington is increasingly being seen as the steel work contractor of choice and the growth in Billington’s market share in 2023 is particularly noteworthy.”