Aecom profits and turnover soar amid “large pursuits”

It has been a bumper year for US-based contractor Aecom, with a close to 5% rise in annual turnover to a record $18.2bn and a pre-tax profit of $429m, a 240% jump on 2016’s figure, which was dampened by acquisition charges and losses incurred on sold businesses.

Annual revenue for the year ended 30 September 2017 in Aecom’s design and consulting services operation was $7.8bn, down 1% on 2016, while its construction arm posted a 15% increase in turnover to $7.3bn. Gross profit margins improved slightly in both businesses to 5.2% and 1.3% respectively.

Aecom’s chairman and chief executive Michael Burke said 2017 had seen "strong cash flow, record backlog, and accelerating revenue growth, which serve as clear evidence that our diverse business and design, build, finance and operate vision are delivering results".

"We entered fiscal 2018 with substantial momentum, which is reflected in our guidance for strong underlying earnings growth and cash flow performance," Burke said.

"In addition, we are focused on stockholder value creation through our new capital allocation policy, which includes continued debt reduction to achieve net leverage of 2.5x, followed by an expectation to repurchase stock under a recently-authorized $1 billion stock repurchase program."

The company praised its own skill with "large pursuits", including the San Onofre nuclear decommissioning project and a large, global design-build win in the fourth quarter for a multi-national pharmaceutical company.

Total backlog increased 11%3 over the prior-year period to $47.5 billion, including a record high backlog level in the design and consulting services segment and 47% growth in management services.

Image: Aecom is headline sponsor for the first all-female team currently attempting to ski across the Antarctic in a feat launched by the Countess of Wessex (Aecom)

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