Orascom Construction boosted by new project wins

Orascom Construction reported a net profit of US$39.8 million (Dh146.2m) for the first half of the year off revenue of $1.87 billion.

The Egyptian contractor demerged from its former parent, fertiliser group OCI NV, in March, when it secured a dual listing for its shares on both the Nasdaq Dubai and the Egyptian stock exchange.

As a result, no direct comparative figures were provided by Orascom Construction, but its revenue was significantly higher than the $1.02bn achieved by the former engineering and construction business within OCI NV in the first half of 2014. Earnings margins were also higher at 5.4 per cent – up from 4 per cent last year.

The company said it had improved operational performance and secured a number of new contracts during the second quarter of 2015. Second quarter earnings were $34m, compared to $5.8m in the first quarter. About half ($16.9m) of Q2 earnings were contributed by its 50 per cent share of contracting company Besix.

The biggest of Orascom Construction’s new contracts came from Egypt, where it has won a number of deals in the transport sector covering airports, roads and bridges. It also signed a $1.3bn deal in the power sector to deliver two combined cycle plants capable of generating 9,600MW through a consortium with Siemens.

A joint venture with Saudi Binladin Group also landed a $125m project to provide all of the civil infrastructure for a 64,000 square metre, mixed use project.

As a result, its backlog has grown to $7bn by June 30 – up 51.3 per cent from $4.75bn a year ago. Some 47 per cent of this is in Egypt, 32.6 per cent is in the US, 15 per cent is in Saudi Arabia and 1.7 per cent in Algeria.

Orascom Construction chief executive Osama Bishai said the $7bn backlog figure achieved was the highest in the company’s history and followed the addition of new contracts in three of its core markets – Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the US.

He added that the firm was “proud” to have delivered two new power plants at West Damietta and Assiut ahead of schedule for the Egyptian government.

“Furthermore, we have made significant progress towards adding another infrastructure investment to our portfolio, as we have already received a letter of award for the Abu Rawash Wastewater Treatment Plant concession in Giza, Egypt. This project will carried out as a public-private partnership (PPP) and marks the second PPP investment for Orascom Construction.”


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