Press release 23/02/1999 00:00 CET

Kvaerner Construction has this week announced its second consecutive year of profits before tax with a 50 per cent increase from the previous year.

This includes its share of the profits from its associate companies, the biggest of which is Gammon Construction in Hong Kong. Although some of the Kvaerner Construction companies are still in turn-around and the steel business has returned a loss, today’s announcement confirms an overall steady recovery following major losses in 1996.

1998 also saw an increase in new orders of seven per cent and sales have continued at a strong level this year with new awards totalling some £250m for the first six weeks of 1999. This includes major new contracts in India and in Hong Kong where Gammon continues to turn in a strong performance in spite of the Far East economic crisis.

Kvaerner has also been named Preferred Contractor for the PFI concession on the redevelopment of Whitehall for the MOD. This will be one of the biggest PFI contracts to be awarded and Kvaerner Construction, with its M&E Facilities Services company Kvaerner Rashleigh Weatherfoil, is in line for the construction contract.

Commenting, Keith Clarke, chief executive of Kvaerner Construction, said: "We now have around 80 per cent of our 1999 work in hand. The 1997 order book was a substantial improvement on the previous year and enabled us to achieve the high turnover levels of 1998. It is particularly gratifying that we have not only held but have increased our order book to start 1999 whilst maintaining a highly selective tendering policy.

"Our current order book and continued bidding activities show no sign of recession. Whilst the market is not booming, we are achieving quality growth, much of which must be attributed to our strong brand names and the breadth of our technical expertise."

· Turnover: 17% increase to £ 1,416m (1997: £1,211m)

· Operating profit: 12% increase to £7.6m (1997: £6.8m)

· Profit before tax and goodwill: 50% increase to £12.9m (1997: £ 8.6m)

· Order book : 9% increase to £ 1,775m (1997: £ 1,626m)

(all figures include Kvaerner’s proportional share of its associates)


For further information contact:Cheryl Eaton, PR Manager - 01923 423 030Kris Birkett, Press Officer - 01923 423 833