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Wed September 30 2020

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Shepherd restructures to stem construction woes

4 Dec 14 Family-owned construction group Shepherd has come off the back of a difficult year with the business restructured but the portfolio of operations remaining under review.

For the year to 30th June 2014 Shepherd Group reported flat profits (before interest and tax) of £10.1m (2013: £10.2m) on reduced revenue of £686m (2013: £748m).

Most of the profit came from the Portakabin business, while the construction business struggled.

Shepherd Construction was dragged down by several problem contracts, but these have now been completed “and so the issues affecting performance have been stemmed”, the company said.

It added: “In addition, the group board has acted swiftly to restructure and reorganise Shepherd Construction to address the issues which cause severe and reoccurring adverse impacts on group performance.”

The performance of Shepherd Group Engineering was also described as “disappointing”.

However, the group balance sheet structure remains sound, with net worth of £229m, cash of £84m and zero debt.

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Along with Portakabin, the results for Shepherd Engineering Services, Shepherd Homes and Shepherd FM were also positive.

David Williams, appointed chairman on 1st July, said: “As a company with nearly 125 years heritage, Shepherd Group has a strong history adapting to market opportunities as they evolve. The group board’s strategy remains to improve focus on the areas of the Group which have the greatest sustainable development opportunities.

“We are currently reviewing our businesses, assessing their strengths and weaknesses in relation to their markets, sector norms and peer performances to ensure that we continue to bring a sharper focus to those areas of the group where the most significant future investment will be made.

“This strategy is essential in achieving our vision of maintaining and developing a portfolio of fully-empowered, high-performing businesses consistently growing shareholder value.

“Our view is that although the economic climate is improving, offering greater potential, there is still a need for caution.  Whilst there are concerns over specific sector and operational issues, the medium term prospects for the group are positive.” 

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