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Fri April 23 2021

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Schools and universities help Willmott Dixon to 61% profit growth

18 Jun 15 Willmott Dixon has reported strong growth in profits and turnover for 2014 and good take-up of its prompt payment scheme by subcontractors.

Group chief executive Rick Willmott
Group chief executive Rick Willmott

Willmott Dixon’s turnover in 2014 grew 24% to 1.26bn (2013: £1.02bn) and profit before tax and amortisation was up 61% to £26.1m (2013: 16.2m).

School and university projects were a particular feature of the company’s construction portfolio during the year.

Willmott Dixon’s EarlyPay system, set up last year to speed up payments to suppliers, has been taken up by more than 120 companies, it was disclosed, with £170m of spend having gone through EarlyPay so far.  Group chief executive Rick Willmott said he was "delighted" with the take up. Willmott Dixon invited more than 400 Category A suppliers to take part in the scheme.

Commenting on the year’s performance, Rick Willmott said “Work volumes and turnover grew substantially in 2014, reflecting our focus on repeat business, strengthening our market share on frameworks and using innovations like our Sunesis school solution with Scape and our private rent homes product through Be:here to provide real solutions to school and housing deliver.

“A major highlight was being confirmed as development partner for Brentford FC, where we will deliver a 20,000 seat stadium and nearly 1,000 new homes by combining market sale with homes for private rent in a multi-phase housing regeneration scheme on a brownfield site close to Kew Bridge with the potential to create a transformational impact on local growth and prosperity.”

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The breakdown of turnover contributed by each division was:

  • Construction: £753m
  • Interiors: £74m
  • Residential construction: £279m
  • Residential development: £113m
  • Support Services: £143m.

Mr Willmott added: “Construction is the core of our business and key highlights have been a further strengthening of our work in the universities sector with large projects for Bournemouth, West London and Birmingham universities where we are using our skills for working in live environments to create better, more efficient premises that allow these universities to attract students in a highly competitive market. Also, our roll-out of Sunesis continues, with 23 orders for schools that are creating 9,000 new places at significant cost and time savings for local authorities.

“We are also expanding our work in the science and technology sector with facilities like the RAL Space Technology laboratory in Oxfordshire which will expand UK expertise in the satellite and space exploration industry.

“Our skill-sets to deliver large projects that are a catalyst for town centre regeneration also increased; following our track-record on large projects like Tesco’s Woolwich Central, we can now add Keynsham Civic Centre, Redcar Community Heart and Flemingate in Beverley as examples where our projects stimulate important inward investment for regional economies.”

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