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Redundancy payouts cost Mouchel

Staff redundancy payouts and delays in payment from businesses in Abu Dhabi have left Mouchel with £87.4 million of debt at the end of last month.

Posting a trading update to the markets today, the consultancy said its performance is “in line with expectations” considering the challenging climate.

In October, Mouchel said it will take a £23m exceptional charge to cover its restructuring, which had seen 2,000 job losses at the firm since January 2009.

Net debt stood at £87.4m at the end of July, compared with £84.5m at the end of last year. The company said that it is executing its debt reduction plan and will provide a full update on progress in our preliminary results announcement  27 October. The order book and pipeline remain is £1.4b and £2.2b respectively.

It said “We are seeing an increase in bidding activity in our core markets.

“We remain confident in the medium and long-term prospects for the Group.”

In the first quarter of this year, Costain and Interserve both lined up £175m offers for the company, before both cut their bids after going through the company’s books.

In June, chairman Richard Cuthbert insisted to CN that the company will justify the decision to stay independent.

Mouchel’s share price stood at 57.75 pence per share this morning, compared with 118p this time last year.

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