Date 17 Jan 2024
Galliford Try Holdings plc, the UK construction group, today provides an update on trading for the half year period from 1 July 2023 to 31 December 2023. The Group expects to announce its results for the half year on Wednesday 6 March 2024.
Update on current trading
The Group is performing well, with strong momentum throughout the first six months of the current financial year, and continues to make good progress against its Sustainable Growth Strategy.
Trading is ahead of the prior year period and the Board's expectations, which were previously increased at the time of the full year results in September 2023. With good visibility over the second half, revenue for the full financial year is now expected to be approximately 5 per cent. ahead of current market expectations1, with an equivalent increase in expected profit before tax.
We are pleased with our recent acquisition of AVRS Systems in November 2023, and the progress of the integration of this specialist business in our growing Environment division. Together with our acquisitions of Ham Baker and MCS at the start of the last financial year, the Environment division is developing its adjacent market strategy as planned.
1 The range of analysts' forecasts for the year ended 30 June 2024, based on forecasts at 12 January 2024, is £1,435m to £1,490m for revenue and £25.2m to £28.1m for pre-exceptional profit before tax.
Given the excellent progress to date against the Group's Sustainable Growth Strategy, the Board expects to update its strategic targets to 2030 during the second quarter of 2024.
The average month-end cash for the six months ended 31 December 2023 was circa £149m (year to 30 June 2023: £135m) and period-end cash at 31 December 2023 was circa £209m (31 December 2022: £196m). The Group continues to maintain a portfolio of PPP assets and has no pensions liabilities and no debt or associated covenants.
The Group's strong balance sheet supports our ability to secure high quality contracts and frameworks, attract a highly skilled supply chain and continue to invest in the business.
Order book and outlook
The Group's order book of £3.7bn (31 December 2022: £3.5bn) remains predominantly in long term frameworks and provides good visibility of future workload, well beyond the current financial year. We continue to see a robust pipeline of opportunities across our chosen sectors, supported by our strong track record and focus on the public and regulated sectors alongside high-quality private clients.
We recently announced our appointment to build the £87m new build-to-rent development at Brent Cross Town, north London for Related Argent and Invesco Real Estate, our second appointment on this development. In the first half of the year our Building business was also appointed to undertake the £72m remodelling and refurbishment of Adelaide House in central London and our Investments and Building businesses signed contracts with a major build to rent operator for a £52m development in Cardiff.
In September 2022, having reviewed the Group's strong cash performance and ongoing capital requirements the Group launched a share buyback programme of up to a maximum of £15m. On 17 November 2023 we announced the completion of the share buyback programme with a total of 8,404,148 shares repurchased and subsequently cancelled, representing approximately 7.5 per cent. of issued share capital.
As previously announced Andrew Duxbury, Group Finance Director, will leave the Group during the year. The Group is making good progress on securing Andrew's replacement and an update will be provided in due course. Also, as previously announced, Marisa Cassoni, Non-executive Director and Chair of the Audit Committee, was appointed Senior Independent Director with effect from 1 November 2023.
Bill Hocking, Chief Executive of Galliford Try, commented:
"Galliford Try continues to perform strongly and consistently, and our performance in the first half of the financial year provides increased confidence for the full year.
“We are pleased with our recent acquisition of AVRS Systems, complementing our existing operations and acquisitions of specialists Ham Baker and MCS Control Systems, further adding to our ability to provide enhanced specialist services to our water sector and related clients. We have excellent people and project teams, a strong balance sheet and high-quality carefully selected order book in our chosen sectors.
“We are encouraged by the performance and momentum in the business and our expectations for the full year to June 2024 have improved accordingly."