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Lend Lease UK profits rocket 50pc as firm sheds 500 staff

Lend Lease’s construction profits in England and Wales rose 50 per cent in the 2012 financial year as staff numbers dropped by 500.

The accounts for the division - covering the old Bovis construction business, which the Australian group bought in 1999 - saw pre-tax profits increase from £13.5m to £20.4m.

Highlights included the delivery of the Athletes Village for the 2012 Olympic Games.

Revenue dropped almost 10 per cent from £605.1m to £545.3m in the year to 30 June 2012. It said the fall in revenue followed a “prioritisation of longer term, value based relationships over short term cost bidding activity”.

That drop has resulted in a reduction in staff numbers from 1,380 to 878, with staff costs reduced by almost a quarter from £97m to £74.7m.

The UK business has also “repositioned” itself.

It has created a “sector business unit” focused on the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Justice, and aimed at providing a “centre of excellence” for health and education.

It now operates as the London division, along with the UK Regions division in the south east, Midlands and the north.

The firm said “cost control” has remained “at the forefront of management activities”.

Lend Lease also said it is seeing a return of the London commercial market.

“The return of the London commercial market to more normal levels of activity and a strong pipeline of work in the UK Regions division underpins the external workload within the business.”

The company is expecting work to start on the Elephant & Castle development next year and said this, along with the International Quarter, provides a £2bn pipeline over the next decade.

The firm said highlights for the year included “the delivery of all milestones in respect of the Athletes Village for the 2012 Olympic Games, the practical completion of 6 projects under the SLAM framework for the MoD and  7 schools reached practical completion on the Birmingham BSF Framework”.

Lend Lease also restated its commitment to sustainability, with KPIs across nine “key impact areas” of its projects.

The firm’s assets were up from £66.7m to £83.4m

Lend Lease acquired the historic Bovis construction contractor in 1999 and named it Bovis Lend Lease. The company underwent extensive restructuring in 2009.
The Australian parent firm dropped the Bovis name last year.

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