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Leadbitter heads May table as housing and regeneration work lead charge

Regeneration and housing have provided some of the biggest contract awards to the construction industry for the second month running, according to research from Glenigan.

The latest contractor league data from the construction business intelligence unit saw the top 50 contractors in May 2012 win £2.04bn of work across 202 projects.

Top 50 contractors May 11-May 12

As the government turns its attention to housing as a catalyst for economic growth, it was housing and regeneration that helped Leadbitter and Higgins top the table for May.

Leadbitter teamed up with Catalyst Housing to win a 904-home regeneration project in Southall worth £196m. Ealing Council chose the duo to build new homes for social rent and shared ownership, as well as 427 homes for outright sale.

Second-placed Higgins meanwhile led a consortium that reached financial close on a £150m housing regeneration in Lambeth, after the Treasury signed off the private finance initiative deal in February.

The Regenter Myatts Field North consortium includes Regenter (a 50/50 joint venture between John Laing and Pinnacle Regeneration Group), Higgins Construction, Rydon Maintenance, Pinnacle PSG and E.ON.

The deal shows the importance of the few PFI schemes still coming through the pipeline as government continues to consider a new private finance model.

The top 10 clients last month let 47 projects worth a combined total of £889.1m. Top-placed of Lambeth Borough Council awarded its £150m Myatts Field North Estate residential and commercial development to Higgins, while further down the table the University of Strathclyde’s £89m technology and innovation centre was won by Lend Lease.

Almost half (46.7 per cent) of the total value of work across the top 10 came from the top three. Tata’s infrastructure contract for its Wolverhampton Jaguar plant was won by Interserve.

The contracts that secured third and fourth spots in May’s league table illustrate the contrast between Lend Lease and Interserve. Lend Lease won two jobs worth £124m, while Interserve took home 10 jobs worth £110m.

The latter reflects how some larger contractors are increasingly focusing on a larger number of smaller jobs to maintain workloads in this tough climate.

Transport and infrastructure deals unsurprisingly lead the way over the year to May 2012, with Network Rail and Greater London Authority holding the top places in the table. Rail plays a major part, with the totals for the top two including Crossrail awards and major station redevelopments.

The top three clients over the year accounted for 53 per cent of the work let across the top 10, which was worth a combined £8.4bn. Tesco completes the top five of the table, though portions of its expansion plans are on hold.

Balfour Beatty holds the top spot in the annual contractor table, which covers the 12 months to May 2012, with more than £2bn of work won.

The contractor scooped a number of smaller jobs last month, winning 13 contracts worth a combined £32.6m.

Other contractors to have recorded a significant number of contract wins in May include Kier, Interserve and Bowmer & Kirkland. Quantity also paid off for ninth-placed Morgan Sindall, which secured 19 projects worth £79.4m in May; its total of 246 over the past 12 months takes it to second spot in the annual table.

In contrast, Sir Robert McAlpine sits in fourth spot with a haul of £1.6bn despite winning just 21 deals, thanks to some major commercial development contracts in London, including the Bloomberg Headquarters and the US Embassy in Battersea.

On the client side, the housing schemes recorded this month unsurprisingly take the local authorities behind them to lofty positions in the monthly table, with the Lambeth Borough Council at the top of the pile and the London Borough of Ealing completing the top five.

The Department of Health dished out 28 contracts, worth £117.3m, leaving it third in both the monthly and annual client tables.

Glenigan has now updated its league tables to include projects valued from £250,000 rather than £500,000 previously.

The top three consulting engineers in May 2012 account for 57 per cent of the value of work across the top 10, with the total value of work in May worth £881.7m. The top consultants won a total of 31 deals last month.

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