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Solid start for UAE builder Arabtec as 2018 net profit grows 108%

The contractor kicks off 2019 with a 7% hike in 2018 revenues and Q4 2018 profit worth almost $21m

Arabtec Holding has reported a 108% year-on-year increase in net profit for 2018.
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Arabtec Holding has reported a 108% year-on-year increase in net profit for 2018.

Net profits more than doubled at Dubai’s Arabtec Holding in 2018, with revenues also up 7% on the year before, the group’s latest financials have revealed.

According to the contracting giant’s audited results for 2018, net profit for the 12 months ending 31 December was valued at $69.7m (AED256m), a 108% year-on-year increase on 2017, when the corresponding figure stood at $33.5m (AED123m).

Q4 2018 alone saw Arabtec's net profit rise to $20.7m (AED76m), a marked increase on the $13m (AED48m) of net profit brought in during the fourth quarter of 2017.

READ: Arabtec Construction wins two Damac contracts worth $169m

Arabtec said in a statement that debtor days were also reduced in Q4 2018 by 11 days to 155 days, adding that this had contributed to a positive net cash from operating activities, valued at $251.6m (AED924m).

“The increase in operating cash reflects the group’s ongoing focus on shortening payment cycles and cash collection from legacy projects,” the statement added.

Speaking on the bumper 2018 figures, Hamish Tyrwhitt, group chief executive officer at the company, said: “In line with our Strategic Roadmap, our objective in 2018 was to rebase the business through a range of initiatives focused on productivity, efficiency, innovation, and strengthening the balance sheet – and we have delivered on our objective.”

The group said it “continues to take a selective approach to new work” in 2019, and reiterated its ambition to “strengthen its regional footprint” by taking advantage of the growing market opportunities in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, and Kuwait.

The results come after a solid start to the year for Dubai-listed Arabec Holding.

Earlier this month saw its wholly owned subsidiary Arabtec Construction announce that it had been awarded a $46m (AED169m) deal from Expo 2020 Dubai. Under the 13-month contract, Arabtec Construction will build the public realm space within Expo 2020 Dubai’s C38 District, which is located “directly adjacent to Al Wasl Plaza”.

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Construction Week - Issue 749
Sep 15, 2019