Results rise for Murray & Roberts

By Chris Sleight28 August 2014

South African contractor Murray & Roberts had revenues of ZAR 36 billion (US$ 3.4 billion) for the year ended June 30, a +5.2% increase on the previous year. The company’s net attributable profit was ZAR 1.26 billion (US$ 119 million), a +26% improvement on last year, and a continuation of the turnaround following losses in 2011 and 2012.

Group chief executive Henry Laas said, “Over the last three years, during which it delivered its Recovery & Growth strategy, the Group restored financial stability and returned to profitability, re-organised and re-energised the businesses and resumed the dividend payment. The Group is now proceeding with its longer term plan to build a New Strategic Future.”

Murray & Roberts’ ‘New Strategic Future’ is a plan aimed at winning more work outside South Africa and breaking into other areas besides traditional construction jobs. Mr Laas said, By 2020, Murray & Roberts aims to be a leading international diversified project engineering, procurement and construction group in selected natural resources market sectors. Specifically, we are targeting the oil and gas, mining, energy and industrial markets, where we are able to leverage our current capabilities.”

As part of this strategy, last year saw Murray & Roberts acquire the remaining shares in Australian construction company Clough that it did not already own.

Mr Laas said, “The Board is pleased with the ZAR 4.4 billion (US$ 410 million) acquisition of the minority shareholding in Clough in December 2013 and the strong financial results delivered in the period under review.”

Clough’s revenues were up +18% last year to ZAR 17.5 billion (US$ 1.65 billion), although its operating profit was down -32% to ZAR 1.03 billion (US$ 97 million). Having said that, Clough’s 2013 operating profits were flattered by a ZAR 681 million (US$ 64 million) divestment.

Murray & Roberts was listed in position 102 in this year’s edition of iC’s study of the world’s 200 largest construction companies. It was the second largest South African-headquartered contractor after Aveng.

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