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Demolition: profits and revenues rise on back of London-led upturn

The demolition sector held up comparatively well last year and has grown steadily in 2013.

* Results for 15 months to September 2012

Total turnover across the top 10 rose by 11 per cent, with the top three all maintaining their respective positions at the summit, while total profit rose by 12.8 per cent.

DSM reported the highest profit margin in the top 10 at 32.2 per cent, while its pre-tax profit was £7.8m - similar to last year’s figure of 7.7 per cent. This consistency suggests a strong focus on the bottom line and profitability that is paying dividends.

“The improvement has been gradual - and that is really what we want”

John Keehan

Keltbray financial director John Keehan says the firm is “pretty pleased” with its performance in the past 12 months.”We feel we’re still the market leader, particularly in the value of work we’re completing. Our profit isn’t great, but it’s still quite pleasing,” he says.

“We have increasingly moved into more specialist markets such as nuclear, pharmaceuticals and industrial. “In 2007, we decided to look into other sectors, particularly rail-based and industrial work.”

London foundation

Keltbray managing director John Price says the multi-year project at London Bridge is a big positive. “We are able to say we will definitely have work going on there over the next four years,” he says.

”We’ve also got other big jobs in London such as Victoria Circle which are good, long-term projects. It’s great to know we’ve got that work coming in.”

London is offering a lot of work at the moment, with the other regions still to catch up.”The commercial sector in London is strong, but it’s not a national phenomenon yet,” Mr Price says. “The upturn in London is just beginning to be seen elsewhere.”

Although London has work available, Keltbray is being careful not to solely focus on the city.

“We don’t just do commercial sector work in London,” Mr Keehan says. “We’ve been doing a lot of technical and industrial decommissioning works. We expect to see more infrastructure projects, particularly more in the energy and transport sectors. The improvement has been gradual - and that is really what we want.”

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