Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to the newest version of your browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of Construction News, please enable cookies in your browser.

Welcome to the Construction News site. As we have relaunched, you will have to sign in once now and agree for us to use cookies, so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Turnover up as Eric Wright branches out

FINANCE - Urban residential projects add to construction mix but group profits tumble

PROFITS at Eric Wright's parent group, Henmead, slipped as the Lancashire-based contracting and property company expanded into new areas.

Results filed at Companies House show group pre-tax profits fell to £4.5 million from £5.9 million in the previous year despite turnover edging up to £134 million from £126.5 million due to a rise in workload at Eric Wright Construction.

The firm said: 'The policy of diversification into other areas of exper tise of construction has been a major driving force behind this successful year.

'Expertise in complex urban residential schemes now contributes significantly alongside commercial, retail, health, education and leisure.' Turnover at Eric Wright rose to £101.2 million last year from £87 million last time. The business closed three NHS Lift contracts with a total value for £38.5 million and entered 2005 with a record forward order book of £57 million.

Group operating profits rose to £9.5 million from £8.4 million in 2003 but a surge in operating expenses offset the increase. Henmead does not break out profits for subsidiary companies but did disclose that the civil engineering operation turned over a record £23 million ? up from £17 million in 2003.

Henmead is majority-owned by founder Eric Wright, who upped his wages by £400,000 to £1.8 million last year. Mr Wright owns 51 per cent of Henmead but has given 49 per cent of the business to a charitable trust and plans to donate his remaining shares in the company on his death.

Henmead also owns property development business Maple Grove, which forward sold a development in Chorley for £6.2 million and completed a £20 million scheme in Kendal.