Engineer says it is moving away from ’challenging’ UK to focus on global markets

Engineer WYG has seen its revenues, profits and order book all slump in another difficult six months for the company.

In the six months to 31 December, its revenue was £83.7m, compared to £115.2m in the equivalent half year in 2009.

It also made a £22m loss, the bulk of which was down to exceptional items, including a £12.1m writedown in goodwill and £5.8m of costs associated with redundancies and office closures.

The writedown was due to a shrinking of the numerous businesses WYG bought in a acquisition spree before the recession, the company said. It also clarified that as part of the restructure, it always planned to shrink revenues.

WYG’s total order book fell by almost a third, plummeting from 290 in 2009 to 198m in this morning’s announcement.

However, the firm is looking to move away from the “challenging” UK and Ireland markets, and now has a presence in Syria, Croatia, Bosnia and South Africa, with an international order book up to £89.2m from £76.6m.

Last September the engineer finished restructuring after banks took a 60% stake in the firm in return for cutting its debt pile.

Paul Hamer, chief executive, said:  “After nearly two years of major restructuring, we now have an appropriate operational and support structure.  The latter stages of this restructuring have been undertaken against a backdrop of profoundly difficult and uncertain market conditions in the UK, particularly in the public sector, and significant volumes of work have been cancelled, reduced or deferred.”

He said: “Following the restructuring, we have a more efficient globally organised business that is well placed to benefit from the opportunities in international markets.  Our focus is now on growing our global revenues through key relationships and strategic partners.”

“Significant market challenges remain and we will continue to drive further efficiencies across the Group.”