Q1 2020 backlog at BESIX hits $5.2bn, despite net loss of $11.4m

BESIX is expected to achieve "normalised performance" later in the year, despite taking "provisions" on certain projects "early"

BESIX is the main contractor for Belgium Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai.
CW Archives/ BESIX
BESIX is the main contractor for Belgium Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai.

Belgian construction group BESIX, partly owned by Egyptian contracting heavyweight Orascom Construction, has recorded $5.2bn in standalone backlog in the first quarter of 2020 ending 31 March.

In a bourse missive, Oracom Construction revealed the financial position for BESIX in Q1 2020 that showed $720.6m worth of new contracts being awarded in the same period.

According to Osama Bishai, CEO of Orascom Construction, the Belgian contractor “reported a robust backlog” in Q1 2020.

However, BESIX recorded a net loss in the first quarter of 2020 of $11.4m. The financial statements indicated that BESIX was impacted by negative adjustments on some of its projects, “mostly in the UAE”, during Q1 2020.

The contractor recorded a net cash position of $57m as of 31 March 2020, positioning the group for the upcoming period.

Commenting on the financial position of BESIX, Bishai said: “BESIX elected to take in Q1 2020 provisions on certain projects early on, and is expected to achieve normalised performance for the balance of the year.

“The safety and wellbeing of our people and communities has always been our top priority. We took a number of immediate steps in coordination with our clients and relevant authorities to ensure precautionary measures at our sites and offices in accordance with the highest standards.”

Bishai added that the company funded and arranged the repair of ventilators across 42 hospitals in Egypt and donated medical equipment.

“These initiatives are also mirrored in BESIX, which has directed resources ranging from donating critical supplies to local hospitals and laptops to children in need for online schooling, to 3D-printing essential parts of protective masks” Bishai concluded.

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