RG Carter construction profit slumps

CN100 firm RG Carter has grown construction turnover by almost a quarter although its profitability took a huge hit from soaring costs.

The Norwich-based contractor, which specialises in public and private sector buildings projects, this week posted income of £304.1m for the 12 months to 31 December 2022.

This was up 24 per cent from £244.7m in the prior year, while net assets nudged up to £36.8m and cash holdings remained strong at £66m.

However, the company saw pre-tax profit slump from £10.6m in 2021 to just £1m in the latest period, as rising costs smashed a hole in its net takings.

A strategic report attached to the full-year accounts filed at Companies House for RG Carter Construction Ltd said: “This reduction in profit reflects the challenging conditions of the current market as a result of inflationary and supply pressures.”

Meanwhile, parent company RG Carter Holdings grew revenue by 23 per cent in 2022 to £322.0m. Its pre-tax profit slumped almost in half to £7.1m.

In a report alongside these accounts, chairman Robert Carter said: “The UK economy has affected the firm over the past year with rising costs and inflation.

“Despite these challenges, the firm continues to have a healthy forward order book and a strong balance sheet which allows the firm to remain agile and adapt as necessary to maximise opportunities.”

Based on its 2021 results, the holding company was 64th in the most recent CN100 index, which ranks the UK’s biggest contractors by turnover.

RG Carter Construction’s operating costs rose from £237.2m in 2021 to £304.1m in the latest period.

Material, site and production costs soared by more than a third to £257.4m in 2022, while staff costs edged up to £31.1m.

While site and production staff numbers rose in the latest year, administrative headcount dropped to leave overall employee numbers up less than 1 per cent at a monthly average of 566.

The firm was one of 14 contractors recently picked by the University of Cambridge for a £680m pipeline of work on its estate.

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