Speedy Hire reduces loss

Published:  24 May, 2010

MERSEYSIDE: Speedy Hire, the UK's largest tool hire company reported reduced losses and halved net debt during the year to April.

Revenue at the group fell 27% from a year earlier to £351.1m. Pre-tax losses reduced by almost £50m to £22.8m due to lower impairment charges and restructuring costs.

The group reduced its cost reducing staff by 312 to 4,000 staff, and closed 37 of its UK depots. The move helped it to bring its net borrowings to £119.3m, down from £248.4m a year earlier.

Speedy said that although it expected the building market to improve throughout the remainder of the year it would not start restocking until it was clearer what the demands of the sector would be.

The company said the backlog of shelved construction projects would provide a much-needed boost to the industry.

Weakness in the commercial and residential sectors meant the bulk of Speedy's revenue came from large-scale civil engineering projects, such as work on the 2012 Olympic developments.

Steve Corcoran, chief executive said: "The pipeline from concept to delivery has shortened as there is a huge backlog of work which was due to start, had gone through the time consuming design and planning processes and just needs to be given a green light."

"When the confidence returns a lot of work is likely to come to the market very quickly," Corcoran said.

Weakness in the commercial and residential sectors meant the bulk of Speedy's revenue came from large-scale civil engineering projects, such as work on the 2012 Olympic developments.

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