18 February 2008

Opus International Consultants Limited (Opus) has reported a 17.4% increase in revenue to $296 million, exceeding its forecast by $15.4 million, or 5.5%, for 2007.

Chairman Basil Logan said that the result represents another year of significant growth for the company, recording a net surplus after tax of $14.2 million.

“This represents a 6.5% increase from 2006 and is 4.7% above the company’s prospectus forecast.

Return on Equity for the 2007 year of 25.6% is an improvement above the 24.7% prospectus forecast.

“Earnings before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) grew 6.2% to $23.8m exceeding prospectus forecast by 3%”.

As a result of this strong financial performance the company also announced a final dividend of 4.5 cents per share, which is fully imputed.

Opus is the largest international infrastructure, maintenance and design consultancy in New Zealand. This is its first annual report as a listed company.

“This is a very pleasing result for Opus after a very busy year in all areas of our operation, and one all shareholders can be very confident in,” Mr Logan said.

“During 2007 Opus continued to cement its position in the markets in New Zealand, Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States and was successful in winning significant contracts in each.”

“Infrastructure asset management, particularly in relation to transportation remains core to our business. We have seen significant growth in this sector recently and have been awarded a number of large projects, in New Zealand and Canada.”

“We have also continued to grow our business through acquisition, particularly in Australia and we intend to continue this growth throughout our business” Mr Logan said.

In the past five years Opus has expanded to become a global company with a strong base in the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada. Total staff numbers increased by 17% to 2236 and our offices and laboratories increased from 67 to 82.

“Our five year strategy focuses on continuing this growth. The technical expertise and commitment of our team, backed by experience and sound business acumen, ensures Opus’ long term future is very positive.”

“It is pleasing to note that Opus is ranked 134 in revenue terms in the Engineering News Record top 150 global design firms, and was listed in Building Design 2008 World Architecture Survey as the eighth largest architectural practice in Australasia,” he said.

Key highlights for Opus this year include:

  •  Developing the Infrastructure Asset Management Framework for the Ontario Ministry of Public Infrastructure Renewal (Canada).
  • Being appointed to a number of New Zealand railway projects including Developing Auckland’s Rail Transport (DART) and the design of the new Newmarket Railway Station (New Zealand).
  • Being appointed for the engineering design of a cruise liner terminal at Southampton (UK).
  • Being awarded the civil and structural consulting work for the new $940 million Sunshine Coast Hospital and Queensland Institute of Medical Research Centre (Australia).
  • Acquisition of Group 42 Consulting and Qantec McWilliam. Opus now operates from 21 offices in Australia.
  • Ongoing national contracts for asset managements of buildings and infrastructure for large companies like Transpower and Telecom.
  • Being awarded a number of professional and community awards including eight different architectural awards, the 2007 Infrastructure Award and Supreme Award from the New Zealand Concrete Society for the Wellington Inner City Bypass, the Shell Bitumen Roading Excellence Award and the New Zealand Planning Institute’s Best Project Award.