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Waterman freezes recruitment for now

Waterman Group, the engineering and environmental consultant, has decided to minimise capital expenditure and defer recruitment until the UK economy improves.

In an interim management statement the group said it has seen turnover grow in international business and has won public sector contracts in the UK to offset the downturn in retail and commercial work.

The statement said: “Trading during the period has been in line with the board's expectations and our international business has continued to see growth in its turnover which achieves our strategy for increasing the percentage of Group turnover generated from overseas projects.

“In the UK, certain areas of the private sector have become more challenging. Consequently, we have decided to minimise capital expenditure and defer recruitment until the economy improves.

“Within the property group, public sector commissions have been secured to supplement the reducing workload in the retail and commercial markets.

“The Group is not immune from the turmoil in the financial markets and challenges remain.

'Public sector work in the UK and economies in developing countries where Waterman is already present, however, continue to grow and these will provide opportunities for Waterman's diverse range of consultancy services.”

The group said it was monitoring carefully forward workloads and the economy while continuing to invest in organic growth anddid not rule out “selective earnings enhancing” acquisitions in the future.