Motherwell Bridge Strongly In The Black

One of the most famous names from Scotland’s industrial past, Motherwell Bridge has been resurrected only two years after the original company collapsed.

MB Engineering Solutions, which was formed from the remnants of the heavy engineering concern, announced it had bought back the rights to use the Motherwell

Bridge name as it revealed a strong set of results for the year to June 2005, its first full year of trading.

Chairman Hugh Hayes and his team have produced the turnaround in less than two years from the collapse of the old Motherwell Bridge Holdings group, and he sees the return of the Motherwell Bridge name as fitting now that the group is trading profitably.

Trading in the year generated a profit before Tax of £3.2M, on turnover of £93M. Hayes noted that each of the operating subsidiaries traded profitably in the year, in some cases producing their best results for some time.

He said the management team and the 1,200 employees, most of whom had been employed by the old company, had all made a major contribution towards the results and could be justifiably proud of what had been achieved so far. The restoration of the Motherwell Bridge name helped underline the recovery and gave the group credibility, and this generated further confidence within the customer base.

Mr Hayes said: “Trading has been good and the robust business disciplines introduced to the group have seen us generate a lot of cash this year.

“We’ve paid £2.1M off our term loans this year, paid £1.5M to the old Motherwell Bridge Group Pension scheme, we’ve bought the Motherwell site for cash, and we’ve also spent another £900,000 on other capital projects. Deferred consideration of £1.9M relating to the acquisition of the subsidiaries was also paid this year. All in all, it was a year of good progress for the new company.”

Looking ahead, Mr Hayes said that having established the viability of each subsidiary, an operating and development strategy had been agreed for each one, designed to help ensure reliable, regular, and repeatable results in the medium to longer term. These strategies varied from company to company, and would be reviewed regularly.

In the shorter term, he noted that order books and enquiry levels were strong and better than at this time last year. He described the trading outlook as “generally positive”, although he stressed that the group still relied heavily on engineering contracts, the timing of which was a critical variable and often outside the control of the group.

He added that the group would meet all its scheduled external commitments in the 2005/6 financial year, including term loan repayments of a further £1.5M, and the final payment of £1M due to the old pension scheme next month.

He added: “With the old history just about fully resolved now, good management disciplines in place and sound trading results, we can start looking to the future. We’ve already invested in and restructured the Motherwell site, opened a new site in Falkirk for MB Inspection, and will open a new site for MB Inspection in Aberdeen this autumn.

“It’s not just about financial recovery now – it’s about investment and development. We are ambitious for the group, have strong support from our banks, and have a whole range of options on how we go forward, including acquisitions, or possibly by joining forces with another company.”


Issued by the BIG partnership on behalf of Motherwell Bridge Ltd


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