Major contractors acquire collapsed NMCN businesses

By Leila Steed12 October 2021

NMCN headquarters

Keltbray, Svella and Galliford Try have acquired the business divisions of collapsed construction and engineering firm NMCN.

The respective sales of NMCN’s water, infrastructure, telecommunications and plant & equipment businesses were agreed by business and financial advisory firm Grant Thornton UK, which took over management of the company after it went into administration last week.

Grant Thornton has agreed two deals with Svella; a privately funded investment vehicle, one for NMCN’s plant & equipment division and another for its telecommunications business.

Andrew Tinkler, Svella chairman, said, “NMCN was one of the UK’s fastest-growing telecoms contractors and was actively supporting the government’s ambitions for nationwide coverage of ultrafast fibre broadband through a number of significant infrastructure contracts and frameworks.”

He added, “The acquisition of the telecoms, plant, transport and accommodation business divisions by Svella safeguards over 680 important skilled roles and secures continuity of service for key national telecoms infrastructure clients.”

While the value of the deals were not disclosed, Svella’s takeover of the telecoms segment will see it fulfull contracts for telecoms infrastructure services with BT, Virgin Media and CityFibre.

According to the company, these contract operations will be supported by the “extensive fleet of plant, machinery, vehicles, mobile offices and welfare units” acquired through the addition of the NMCN plant & equipment division.

Tinkler said, “The deal provides Svella with an extensive platform to fully exploit the growth potential of the telecoms business in this expanding industry, while facilitating development of a full plant hire offering to third parties.”

Similarly, Galliford Try described its £1 million acquisition of NMCN Water business as a “great opportunity” for both parties, and one that will see roughly 900 skilled employees, including senior managers, join its operations.

Bill Hocking, Chief Executive of Galliford Try, said, “This acquisition will accelerate the growth of our successful Environment business, providing work with new clients and increased capabilities.

“This is a very exciting time as we deliver our Sustainable Growth Strategy and I look forward to a bright future for our collective team.”

Grant Thornton also signed a deal with multi-disciplined construction and engineering company Keltbray for NMCN’s infrastructure portfolio.

For an undisclosed amount, the company’s agreement included all associated project assets and will “ensure the delivery of vital infrastructure projects across the UK”.

Keltbray has assumed full responsibility for completing its new infrastructure contracts, which include projects for National Highways as part of the UK Governments new infrastructure programme.

Darren James, Keltbray CEO, said, “Keltbray are pleased with the ‘on strategy’ opportunities presented by the acquisition of these contracts, working with clients on some of the UK’s most important infrastructure projects.

“Today’s announcement accelerates our plans to build a resilient, growth-oriented business. Equally important, we have also safeguarded 117 valuable jobs and livelihoods that could otherwise have been lost to our industry.”

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