Increased annual turnover and profits for Suffolk-based One Group Construction

Chief executive Richard Neall with other members of the management tream at One Group Construction.

Chief executive Richard Neall with other members of the management tream at One Group Construction. - Credit: Archant

The head of an East Anglian construction services group says it is well-placed to overcome the “temporary uncertainty” created by the vote to leave the European Union.

According the latest Markit/CIPS survey, the construction sector suffered its worst month for seven years during June in the run-up to the referendum, and shares in stock market-listed housebuilders have come under pressure since the vote amid fears over property values.

But Richard Neall, chief executive at Ipswich-based One Group Construction, said: “As a group of construction-related businesses we have learned to be comfortable with change.

“We therefore view the temporary uncertainty around Brexit as just another challenge to be overcome. Looking towards the medium-term, we’re excited about the opportunities which will no doubt be available as the process evolves. We intend to fully embrace those opportunities.”

Mr Neall was speaking after the group filed accounts at Companies House showing that its turnover for the year to December 31 totalled £127.43m, up from £121.29m in 2014, with operating profit growing from £3.39m to £4.41m and pre-tax profit from £3.17m to £4.21m.

The group, a member of the EADT/EDP Top100 listing of the 100 largest companies in Suffolk and Norfolk, has interests including civil engineering, road surfacing, groundworks, construction, property development, conservatories, renewable energy and plant hire.

In its annual report, One Group said this diversity meant it was “not overcommitted to any particular market”, and this helped it achieve “strong consolidated results”.

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Jackson Civil Engineering, the group’s largest subsidiary, contributed turnover of £76.6m and an operating profit of £2.6m.

“This represents a strong increase in sales and another excellent net operating margin of 3.4%,” the group said in its report.

SEH French, the group’s main construction arm, suffered a trading loss, attributed to “several difficult projects which are now fully complete”, but profit improved at other businesses including SEH Ipswich (groundworks), SEH Asphalt (surfacing) and Emmit Plant (hire).

SEH BAC, which installs windows, doors and conservatories, achieved “very good results in a highly competitive sector” while SEH Commercial, which provides windows and doors for commercial and industrial properties, had “another year of very strong growth”.

Looking ahead, the report added: “The group’s subsidiary companies all show healthy order books for 2016 and we will continue to invest in order to support these subsidiaries as they grow.”