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Buyer looks for UK growth

VolkerWessels was formed in 1997 by the merger of construction firms Kondor Wessels and Volker Stevin.

The firm operates in Holland and Germany as well as the UK through a number of subsidiary contractors including John Crowley and GrantRail.

It also has bases in Seattle and Calgary in Canada. In 2003, turnover at the firm went up 5 per cent to £2.4 billion with over £2 billion of this coming from its Dutch operations.Pre-tax profits fell 37 per cent from £116 million in 2002 to £73 million last year.

The firm did not break down its UK results but in a statement which accompanied the results, it admitted: 'Results in the UK lagged expectations in 2003 but expectations for the UK remain high.'