Major regional projects lift Laing profits

Michael Hunt

Laing O'Rourke, the contractor responsible for Manchester's Metrolink extension and much of Grosvenor's £1bn Liverpool One, today reported a 21.5% rise in annual turnover to £4.24bn.

Laing saw a 42.3% increase in pre-tax profit for the year to April 2008 to £142.6m.

Iain Ferguson, group finance director, said: "Laing O'Rourke has delivered a good set of results, beating our forecasts and generating cash.

"We can be satisfied that the group's order book is at record levels, rising to over £10bn since the period end, our cash position is strong at £477m, an increase of 58% over 2007, and we have committed but unused banking facilities of £170m."

In June, a consortium including Laing, Thales and GrantRail, was selected by Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive to design, build and maintain new lines as part of a £575m project to double the Metrolink tram network. Laing was the main construction partner for Grosvenor's 43-acre Liverpool One scheme, which opened its first phase in May this year. Laing is also appointed on the new stadium for Liverpool FC and the £350m, 1.6m sq ft retail scheme, the Rock, for Thornfield Properties in Bury town centre.

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