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NCE Live News Updates Friday 6 September 2013: Laing O'Rourke profit boost

Contractor sees growth in managed revenue and pre-tax profit

12.30pm: Durham County Council is seeking contractors for a civils framework.

The local authority is looking to appoint up to five engineering firms to a panel to be used for projects worth more than £250,000.

Contractors have until 4pm on 9 October to express an interest in the framework.

Up to 10 are expected to be invited to submit formal bids for inclusion on the four-year deal.

For more info, see the OJEU notice.


12pm: Network Rail and Chiltern Railways are to join together to upgrade infrastructure between Oxford and London Marylebone.

The partners will carry out work on the existing line between Oxford and Bicester, as well as building 1km of new track between Bicester and the Chiltern Main Line.

The work will allow faster train services between Oxford and the capital.

Karl Budge, route delivery director from Network Rail, said: “These are exciting times for rail users and the investment being made between Oxford, Bicester and Bedford will make a huge difference to local people and the local economy.

“This collaboration will allow fast train services to operate between Oxford and London Marylebone and will move Network Rail closer to reinstating the railway line through to Bedford and Milton Keynes via Bletchley.”


11.30am: The next chance to bid for cash through the Regional Growth Fund will open next month, Nick Clegg has announced.

The deputy prime minister said Round 5 of the Fund would focus on private enterprise projects that could generate private sector investment and jobs.

Application forms will be available in early October and businesses will have until 9 December to submit their bids.

Clegg said: “The Regional Growth Fund has been a success, helping to create thousands of jobs.

“Britain is returning to long-term growth, but we want to see business booming. I’d encourage all companies to look carefully at how the Fund can help you grow, and get ready to apply in October.”


11am: Crossrail has completed a key project at the Royal Docks in time to allow ships to pass through to the Excel exhibition centre for an event.

Dam walls were installed in a section of the docks earlier this year, and 13M litres of water drained.

This allowed Crossrail to access the Victorian Connaught Tunnel from above for widening, deepening and strengthening work.

The dam has now been removed, and the dock opened ahead of schedule.

Built in 1878 but not used by passengers since late 2006, Connaught is the only existing tunnel to be used for Crossrail.


10am: Laing O’Rourke has boosted pre-tax profit by almost 150 per cent in a year.

The Dartford-based contractor revealed profit before tax of £57.0M for the 12 months to 31 March 2013. This was up from £23.4M in the previous year.

Laing O’Rourke’s managed revenue grew 2 per cent to £4.4bn.

It said moderate growth could be expected in managed revenue and pre-tax earnings over the next financial year.

Chairman Ray O’Rourke said: “Laing O’Rourke has delivered another creditable performance, generating strong cash flows, earnings and forward orders.

“We also made good progress against our strategic mission to become an enduring engineering enterprise that delivers ‘excellence plus’ performance for our clients, and on

the key actions that we are taking to deliver strong, stable and sustainable revenues over time.”

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