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Byrne Group announces £4m loss

A £9m loss in its fit-out business Chorus reduced Byrne Group to a £4m pre-tax loss in the year to 31 May 2015.

The result marked the third consecutive year in the red for the group’s fit-out arm, which posted a loss of £15m the previous year.

In results filed with Companies House, the group attributed the group loss to “three problematic legacy contracts” confined to Chorus.

The company’s £4m loss for the year was an improvement from the previous year’s £12.1m.

Group turnover fell 14.4 per cent to £298.9m, down from £349.1m in the firm’s previous results. However, the group’s latest turnover was still its second highest in the past five years.

Turnover at Chorus shrank by almost two-thirds to £61m for the year to 31 May 2015, down from £159m in the year to 31 May 2014.

The group said Chorus had now completed or was close to completing the three problem contracts, adding that the subsidiary’s focus will now be on “the recovery of entitlement for costs which we [the group] have incurred but not yet received”.

Byrne said it was “looking forward to a return to profitability” on other ongoing Chorus projects.

In contrast, the group’s Byrne Bros formwork business grew revenue to £146m, up from £111m, while turnover at London fit-out and refurbishment arm Ellmers rose to £81m, up from £61m.

The group also saw a major outflow of cash during the year, posting a net decrease in cash of £33.5m, compared with an increase of £13.9m in the previous year’s results.

Looking ahead, Byrne Bros has secured new orders in excess of £170m in the coming year, while Ellmers has secured £128m.

In March this year, Byrne Group poached former Laing O’Rourke director Philip Wainwright to become its new finance director.