Smaller construction firms face threat from hungry big names
A West Midlands construction firm has said smaller building companies could come under pressure as larger housebuilders are forced into their sectors by the credit crunch.
Adonis Construction, based in Kingswinford, has avoided the worst effects of the credit crunch that has devastated the industry because of its focus on retail and public projects.
But it said larger housebuilders – which have been the worst affected by the financial downturn – would be looking to move into public contracts to keep up their income.
Adonis has just started work on a major new £2.6 million health centre in Dudley. Funded by property development experts Matrix Realty, Adonis hopes the three-storey centre will enhance its reputation in the healthcare construction industry.
The 2,500 sq m building will comprise a medical centre with accommodation for nine GP consultants and a range of healthcare services such as treatment rooms, minor surgery rooms and an on site pharmacy.
The construction project comes hot on the heels of a new £2.5 million primary care centre in Birmingham, a £2 million medical centre in Billesley and a just-started £4 million surgery in Selly Oak.
But marketing assistant Richard Walker said the company expected there to be more pressure from larger firms in their sector in the future.
Thousands of jobs have been lost in the construction industry in recent months, with housebuilders the worst affected, because of the rising price of raw materials and stagnant housing market.
Mr Walker said: “We have never really got involved in residential building so in terms of the market that’s not really affected us. I think that it is a major factor for the industry. A lot of our competitors who are involved in residential development have suffered.
“One of the focuses for us is to secure more public work. We have done a lot of public work in the past, at schools, etc.
“But it’s becoming more competitive. To an extent you could see more housebuilders moving into the private sector and public contracts. If they have already got things in place they could do that.”
Adonis has more than 30 years’ experience in the construction sector and has an annual turnover of more than £40 million.
It has about 80 full-time staff at its Black Country headquarters.
Neville Clements, chairman of Adonis Construction, said he hoped the new centre will provide an economic boost for the area, together .“This state-of-the-art centre will create new jobs and serve around 9,000 people in the Dudley area,” he said.
Simon Wilson, development manager at Matrix Medical, said it was Adonis’ proven experience in the healthcare construction sector that made it the stand-out choice for the project.
“We looked at a number of construction firms but with three decades experience and an impressive, expanding portfolio of specialist healthcare projects, Adonis was a clear step ahead of the competition.’’
Valerie Little, director of public health, at Dudley PCT, said: “The Primary Care Trust is very pleased that plans to build a new surgery are now progressing This will be an excellent service for patients in the Dudley area who will be able to access, community nursing, minor surgery as well as mainstream GP services.”