Data gathered by The Builders’ Conference contract reporting service puts the total value of new orders won by UK construction companies in January 2020 at £7.77bn, compared to £5.82bn in January 2019, and a near record-breaking monthly total.
While questions may be asked of the methodology in certain cases, the fact that an unprecedented 19 companies picked up more than £100m of new contract awards during the month is grounds indeed for optimism after months of Brexit uncertainty and investors stalling.
The Builders’ Conference collated data from approximately 400 construction companies that won work during January. The £7.77bn total value of new work came from 668 separate contracts signed – with an average value of £11.6m each.
This compares with January 2019, when 647 contracts were signed with a total value of £5.82bn – averaging £9.0m per contract.
The biggest contract award registered by The Builders’ Conference during January 2020 was the £1.2bn East West Rail (EWR) project to re-establish a rail link between Cambridge and Oxford. The contract was awarded to the EWR Alliance consisting of Laing O’Rourke, Volker Rail, Atkins SNC Lavalin and Network Rail. The alliance has actually been working on the project since 2016 but according to The Builders’ Conference has only just now formally signed terms.
In second place in The Builders’ Conference BCLive contracts league table for January 2020 is Multiplex, which signed a £400m contract to build a mixed-use development at Elephant & Castle in London for Delancey Estates and a £200m mixed use development for Native Land on Blackfriars Road in London.
Kier, Barratt Homes and Laing O’Rourke also all signed £200m+ of new business in January. Kier’s £244m haul came from 22 separate contracts – the biggest being an extension of KierWSP’s joint venture highways maintenance deal with Northamptonshire County Council. The Builders Conference says that the 16-month extension is worth £100m to Kier.
Laing O’Rourke, by contrast, won a single £200m mixed-use new-build development at Deansgate in Manchester