LJMU Copperas Hill Proposed Visual June 2018 Low Res
Morgan Sindall is on site delivering a teching and sports hub at Copperas Hill in Liverpool

Morgan Sindall announces profit increase to £35.5m

Jessica Middleton-Pugh

The multi-disciplinary firm whose stable of companies includes Muse Developments, Lovell, Overbury and its eponymous contracting division, has announced a 20% increase in pre-tax profits compared to the same period in 2018.

Morgan Sindall has offices in Manchester, Liverpool, and Whitehaven. In its results for the half-year to June 2019, the company revealed turnover had remained stable at around £1.4bn, while pre-tax profit increased from £29.9m, to £35.5m. An interim dividend payout is expected of 20p.

Morgan Sindall Construction saw an increase in operating profit of 23%, to £13.9m, Muse’s profit increased by 36% to £8.3m, and Lovell Partnerships’ profit increased by 39% to £6.4m. Fit-out division Overbury’s profit dipped by £2m to £16.4m, however it maintained a 4% operating margin.

Overall, net cash increased from £97m to £114m.

Key projects in the North West cited in the half-year report include Morgan Sindall’s construction of the £47m teaching hub and sports building for Liverpool John Moores University and the £30m Northern Royal College of Physicians at Paddington Place, and Muse’s ongoing developments at New Bailey and Warrington’s Time Square.

For Lovell, the half-year report said the operating margin in the period, of 2.7%, was “significantly behind normalised level of profitability”, however there was a “renewed momentum” in the division, seeking to take advantage of the “substantial opportunity” in the residential market. In the mixed-tenure sector, 493 homes were built in the first half of 2019, up from 357 the year before.

Chief executive, John Morgan said: “We have had a strong first half of the year and these results underline the significant operational and strategic progress being made across the Group.  Our strong balance sheet including our net cash position is a significant differentiator for us, allowing us to make the right long-term decisions for the business, which best positions us in our markets for continued sustainable growth.”

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Having the public sector pump a load of grant subsidy into their resi schemes in high profile locations where it’s not needed obviously helps.

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