BMT: Annual Report Shows Solid Performance

BMT Group Ltd, international design, engineering, risk management consultancy, report resilient performance in difficult market conditions in most sectors


The group's financial director, David McSweeney reports on 2011:


A resilient performance As competition intensifed and demand weakened, BMT faced diffcult market conditions across most areas of the business during the reporting period. Given these circumstances the group performed well, with revenues from continuing businesses rising 8% to £127m and underlying operating profts unchanged at £6.5m. With competition keen and our customers’ budgets under pressure we were, however, unable to make further progress in our strategic aim of improving underlying margins.


Sectors In the defence sector, we were able to maintain revenues and proft in the face of government spending cuts. In the UK, although big platform work did reduce, this was offset by the MoD’s need to buy in more support from external consultants as it cut in-house staff.


In the US the opposite was true: a move to ‘in-sourcing’ left some of our operations short of work.


In Australia, we continued to invest in maintaining our position in the market while the moratorium on defence spending continued; but we are hopeful of some anticipated projects going ahead next year.


In energy, offshore oil and gas activity picked up in the Gulf of Mexico following the eventual renewal of drilling operations once the Deepwater Horizon disaster had been contained. We invested in Brazil, opening a new offce and buying a stake in a Brazilian company. Both were designed to take advantage of the heavy workflow expected over the next 15-20 years in the Santos Basin off the Brazilian coast.


Much of our environmental work in Australia was suspended by the severe flooding that hit the country in January/ February 2011, with dedicated budgets being redirected towards reparations. However, our mining operations went from strength to strength and our acquisition of JFA Consultants signalled our belief in the opportunities ahead. Investment and currency With fnancial markets continuing to stutter, little progress was made in terms of capital improvement. Yields did, however, show slight improvement, although given the low interest rate environment, the impact in cash terms is negligible. The weak pound continues to provide some positive effects, but this is far less marked than in previous years.

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