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Skanska to cut 3,000 jobs in global restructuring

Skanska will cut thousands of jobs across the group as part of a “comprehensive restructure” following problems in its European operations.

The group’s Swedish bosses confirmed plans to lay off 3,000 workers across its global operations in 2018 at a cost of around SEK600m (£43m).

A spokesperson for the company would not confirm where jobs would be cut or when the process would be begin.

The moves follow “unsatisfactory performance” across several construction units in Europe, outside of the Nordic regions, and a slowdown in European infrastructure development (PPP).

A trading update from the group released today said: “Due to the unsatisfactory performance of several construction units Skanska will take the following actions: restructure the construction operations in Poland, leave the power sector in the USA, focus on the core business in the UK and continue to adapt to tougher market conditions in the Czech Republic.”

In its last interim report, released in October 2017, Skanska CEO Johan Karlström said that while problems in its UK construction business had “stabilised” but the outlook for non-residential in the country was negative for 2018.

A spokesperson for Skanska UK: “We are continuing to work on improving performance across the UK operations and focusing on our core business is fully aligned with that strategy.

“As with all businesses, we maintain our headcount in line with our expectations for the business.

“Our order backlog in the UK remains robust, supported by a strong balance sheet and there is minimal impact to Skanska of Carillion’s situation.”

On Tuesday the company announced the establishment of a new office in Manchester city centre, saying it was ”part of its commitment to working in Greater Manchester”.

The firm, which employs around 39,000 people, said the job cuts would lead to savings of around SEK 1bn (£90m) a year.

For January to December 2017, impairment and restructuring charges will result in a SEK 1.1bn (£99m) hit to the group’s revenue.

Overall operating (profit before tax) income for 2017 is forecast to be SEK 5.3bn (£477m), down from SEK 8.2bn (£738m).

Skanska have also initiated a management skahe up in a bid to “improve profitability”, which sees group CFO and executive vice president for Skanska UK Peter Wallins move on with Magnus Perrson taking over. 

Skanska shares were down 6 per cent at midday on the Swedish stock exchange.

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