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Balfour boss McNaughton departs after profit warning [Western Morning News (England)]
[May 07, 2014]

Balfour boss McNaughton departs after profit warning [Western Morning News (England)]

(Western Morning News (England) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Balfour Beatty has begun the search for a new chief executive after it warned that profits will be significantly short of expectations.

The infrastructure firm said Andrew McNaughton has stepped down with immediate effect following the disappointing update, which it blamed on continuing difficulties in its UK construction arm.

The company also said it will consider the sale of US project manager Parsons Brinckerhoff, a business it bought for Pounds 380 million in 2009.

Shares slid more than 16% following the profits warning.

Chairman Steve Marshall, who appointed Mr Mc-Naughton as chief executive at the start of 2013, will run Balfour for an interim period.

He said: "Today's trading update is once again disappointing.

"The board is committed to rapidly addressing the root causes." The decline in expectations stems from its UK construction business, with profits set to be Pounds 30 million lower than previously hoped.

Balfour reported a turnaround in its regional construction arm but its mechanical and electrical engineering and major buildings projects businesses have suffered significant operational issues.

Balfour's order book reduced in the first quarter to Pounds 12.9 billion compared with Pounds 13.4 billion at the end of last year. Increases to the professional services order book were more than offset by reductions in construction services and support services.

Yesterday's warning is the latest blow to Balfour from its UK construction arm, which was responsible for a profits warning in April last year.

Balfour employs more than 40,000 people worldwide.

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