Galliford Try Housing Companies Re-branded as Linden Homes

The Galliford Try Group has united its housebuilding companies under one banner – Linden Homes.



Stamford Homes, Midas Homes, Rosemullion Homes and Gerald Wood Homes will all now operate under the Linden Homes brand name.


A quote from their new look website states ”Our aim is to further improve upon our customer service and the quality of our homes to achieve a better understanding of what you want, drawing on our regional expertise and applying it on a national level”


Long overdue in our opinion having the same corporate identity is more suitable to a top twenty house builder than half a dozen names with the same logo.


But as a reminder here are some of the names and logos we won’t be seeing any more.


If you are a house builder and need assistance with your commercial requirements or a subcontractor looking for an introduction to major house builders such as Galliford Try Linden Homes then contact Andrew Fella at Onyx Construction Consultants Ltd on 01473 743682



Taylor Wimpey Reduces Debt by Selling Off US and Canada Housing Divisions


One of Onyx Construction Consultants major clients announced on 31st March that it had reduced its debt with the sale of its USA & Canada House Building Divisions a wise move we think bearing in mind the current climate in the US and UK.


Taylor Wimpey plc announces the sale of its North American Business for ($955m) £595m.

The Company has agreed to sell  Taylor Woodrow Holdings (USA), Inc. and Taylor Wimpey Holdings of Canada, Corporation to TMM Holdings Limited Partnership, a partnership controlled by certain investment funds affiliated with TPG Capital, certain investment funds affiliated with Oaktree Capital Management, L.P., as well as JH Investments Inc., and its subsidiaries  for a base consideration of $955m (£595m at the current exchange rate) payable on Completion. The Company will also receive additional proceeds for cash balances in the North American Business as at 31 December 2010 and net capital invested by the Company in the North American Business from 1 January 2011 to Completion.

Highlights of the Disposal:

– The Disposal is a significant step towards achieving the Group’s strategic objective of focusing on its core UK housing business, creating a strong financial base for future investment;

The base consideration of £595m represents a premium of 3.4% to adjusted net assets as at 31 December 2010); and

The net cash proceeds of the Disposal will be applied to reduce the Group’s borrowings and its pension deficit, resulting in an overall increase in its financial flexibility.

Following the Disposal, the Group will build on the significant performance improvement in the UK. The Group will continue to focus on delivering margin improvement from the existing land portfolio and adding new sites where good opportunities are identified.

Pete Redfern, Group Chief Executive, said:

“We are delighted to announce the sale of our North American Business, which is a significant step towards our goal of becoming a UK focused homebuilder. The sale will provide us with a strengthened balance sheet and increased financial capacity to invest in the UK and to pursue our strategic aims of focusing on margin growth.

“Following a competitive process, we are pleased to have achieved a price that reflects an attractive valuation for this business. I have been hugely impressed by our North American employees and would like to take this opportunity to thank them for their hard work, loyalty and commitment over many years and in relation to this transaction.

Introduction Leads to Contract Award for Quinn Brickwork

Key Introduction Leads to Contract Award for Quinn Brickwork

Onyx Construction Consultants Limited are pleased to announce that another introduction made by them, between a valued contact at a Southern Area House Builder and one of their clients Quinn Brickwork Ltd. led to Quinn Brickwork securing a 19 unit site contract in Peterborough last month. In addition the House Builder having seen how Quinn Brickwork has performed with regards to programme and quality now wishes to negotiate the next phase of 24 units due to start shortly.

This introduction is only one of many made in the last 4 years between Onyx Construction Consultants specialist subcontractor clients and the many key placed contacts both business and personal that the directors of Onyx have at many of the House Builders, Contractors and Developers in the East Anglia and Northern Home Counties areas, leading to tenders being issued and contracts secured by our clients.

Onyx Consultants Ltd – Onyx Construction Marketing Service

In the past introductions have only been made with specialist subcontractors who are already one of our respected clients using the Onyx Estimating and Surveying services. This will shortly change with the introduction of Onyx Consultants Ltd our sister company and it’s Marketing Service.

As part of the Onyx Construction Marketing service introductions to our many business and personal contacts in the industry will be made available to those subcontractors who sign up for the service and meet the criteria needed.

More details of contract awards resulting from our introductions both recent and past together with referral and recommendation letters will be posted on the Onyx Construction Marketing blog and soon the Onyx Consultants Ltd website.

In the meantime if you feel that you would benefit from this service or know someone that will please contact us via email or contact Andrew Fella on 07798 640022.

Bellway Homes – Interim Statement – Profits up 20%

Things are looking up at Bellway Homes including the number of sites opening and more importantly their profit. With their land buyers looking to buy new land on top of the 1260 plots bought already.

The full report:

Interim Management Statement

7 December 2010

Bellway is today issuing an Interim Management Statement (IMS) relating to the
period from 1 August to 30 November 2010.

As previously reported at the time of our annual results on 19 October,
reservations prior to the announcement of the Government’s Comprehensive
Spending Review (CSR) did not benefit from the usual degree of uplift normally
associated with the housing market in autumn. Since the CSR, however, home
reservations taken are ahead of the Board’s expectations, although still
slightly down compared with the same period last year. The decline in consumer
confidence appears to have levelled out and encouragingly, people are still
committing to purchase even at this time of year.

The Group currently has 3,614 sales (2009 – 3,486) secured for this financial
year and a further 400 (2009 – 598) for the next financial year. The average
selling price for all these sales is £167,600 which is 8.4% ahead compared to
this time last year, mainly as a result of the continuing change in product
mix. The Board anticipates that unit completions in the six months to 31
January 2011 will be similar to last year, albeit at a slightly higher average
selling price and that net profit before tax will rise by up to 20%.

Our divisions are gradually increasing investment in new site openings and it
is anticipated that the number of selling outlets will increase from 185 to
around 200 in early 2011. Having completed the acquisition of 1,260 plots in
the period and still maintaining a net cash position, the balance sheet remains
robust. The Group’s land teams are actively looking to secure further
opportunities at attractive margins and the divisions are concentrating on
bringing newly acquired sites to the market as quickly as possible to underpin
the operating margin going forward.

The outcome for the year to 31 July 2011 will be greatly dependent on the level
of consumer confidence during the 2011 spring selling season. This, in turn is
reliant on a reasonable supply of affordable mortgages combined with sensible
lending criteria.

The Board believes it is currently well positioned in what continues to be a
tough and testing market for UK housebuilding.

The Berkeley Group – Interim Results

Interim Results 2010/11

 Announcing the results of The Berkeley Group Holdings plc (“Berkeley” or “the Group”) – the urban regenerator and residential property developer – for the six months ended 31 October 2010, Chairman, Tony Pidgley said:

“This strong set of results represents an excellent performance from Berkeley at a time when the economy is looking to find traction for what is proving an elusive sustained recovery.  When coupled with Berkeley’s strong balance sheet, its unrivalled land bank and the underlying demand for the well located, quality homes developed by Berkeley in London and the South East, the Group remains well positioned to deliver enhanced shareholder value.  As always, it is only through the hard work and dedication of Berkeley’s people that results such as these are possible.”


·   Earnings per Share Up 19.2% to 33.5 pence (2009: 28.1 pence)
·   Profit before Tax Up 18.5% to £61.6 million (2009: £52.0 million)
·   Operating Margin 17.4% (2009: 17.4%)
·   Net Asset Value per Share Up 4.9% to 667.6 pence (April 2010: 636.7 pence) following acquisition of 3.8 million shares for £30.0 million
·   Net Cash £252.7 million (April 2010: £316.9 million)
·   Cash due on Forward Sales Up 21.9% to £790.1 million (April 2010: £648.1 million)
·   Land Bank 2,512 plots acquired and £263 million of future gross margin added in the period; an increase in value of 12.9% since 30 April 2010 


Commenting on the results, Managing Director, Rob Perrins, said:

 “Today’s results, which show an increase in both earnings and sales reservations approaching 20%, demonstrate the underlying resilience of the housing market in London and the South East over the last six months.  As a consequence, cash due on forward sales has increased by 21.9% over the period, providing forward visibility in a period which has seen Berkeley increase the number of sites from which it is selling.

Since the start of the year, Berkeley has acquired some 2,500 plots, including prime London sites in Westminster and on Hammersmith Embankment, both completing in the second half, and a site for 1,000 new homes in Horsham. Berkeley’s strategy is based on identifying opportunities to acquire land in the right locations to which we can add value and these results highlight growth of 12.9% in the value of land bank future gross margin, from £2,038 million to £2,301 million, in the six months.

 Overall, this strong performance provides the Board with confidence that Berkeley can outperform management’s original expectations for the current year and is well placed for the following year.

Finally, I am delighted that Berkeley’s Vision 2020 strategy, launched in June, has so quickly become part of the Group’s culture and continues to place Berkeley at the forefront of the industry.  For the fourth consecutive year Berkeley has ranked first in the NextGeneration Sustainability benchmark. In addition, St Edward’s development at Stanmore has received a coveted Building for Life award.  It is only by putting the customer and the communities we create at the heart of every decision that the challenges faced by the industry can be addressed.”


 Berkeley is pleased to announce a pre-tax profit of £61.6 million for the six months ended 31 October 2010.  This is an increase of 18.5% on the £52.0 million achieved in the same period last year, driven principally by an increase in revenue of 15.9% from £290.1 million to £336.2 million.  Operating margin of 17.4% is at a similar level to the first half of last year, with net finance income of £1.8 million (2009: £3.0 million) and joint ventures contributing £1.2 million of profit (2009: £1.6 million loss).  Basic earnings per share for the six months are 33.5 pence compared to 28.1 pence for the equivalent period last year; an increase of 19.2%.


The housing market in London and the South East is characterised by an imbalance of demand for new homes in excess of supply.  The sites recently acquired by Berkeley are in excellent locations where this imbalance has traditionally been most acute.  For the time being therefore, and in the absence of any external shocks to the economy, Berkeley believes the current market in terms of prices and transaction levels should remain stable.  

Longer term, Berkeley’s outlook remains closely aligned to the success of London in attracting investment, employment and of course, retaining its status as the premier World City.  Outside London, which is more closely aligned with the UK domestic economy, the lack of liquidity and the absence of the feel-good factor remain constraints to an increase in transaction volumes on each site.

 With these challenging market conditions presenting opportunities for those with access to capital, Berkeley will enter 2011 in a strong position and with an increased level of confidence to deliver the new homes and places in which our customers aspire to live.

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