Balfour Beatty plc is an English multinational infrastructure group
with capabilities in construction services, support services and
infrastructure investments. A constituent of the FTSE 250 Index,
Balfour Beatty works across the United Kingdom, Ireland, the United
States, Canada and South East Asia.
3 Notable projects
5 External links
Balfour Beatty was formed in 1909 with a capital of £50,000. The two
principals were George Balfour, a qualified mechanical and electrical
engineer, and Andrew Beatty, an accountant, who had met while working
for the London branch of the New York engineers JG White &
Company. Initially the Company concentrated on tramways, the first
contract being for the Fife Tramway Light and Power Company at
Dunfermline; its general construction expertise was extended during
World War I
World War I with, for example, army camps.
George Balfour was elected to the House of Commons in 1918 and played
a large part in the debates which established the National Grid. To
service this new market, George Balfour, Andrew Beatty and others
formed Power Securities to finance projects and the two companies,
with their common directors, worked closely together. Balfour Beatty
was heavily involved in the development of Scotland’s hydro electric
power, building dams, transmission lines and power stations.
Other work between the wars included the standardisation of the
electricity supply in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire, and the
construction of tunnels and escalators for the London Underground.
Extensive overseas work started in 1924 when
Balfour Beatty took over
the management of the East African Power & Lighting company;
construction work included hydro electric schemes in the Dolomites,
Malaya and India; power stations in Argentina and Uruguay and the Kut
Barrage on the Tigris in Iraq.
By World War II, control of the firm had passed on: Andrew Beatty had
died in 1934 and George Balfour died in 1941.
Construction work was
now dominated by the war effort and notable projects included blocking
the approaches to
Scapa Flow and the building of six Mulberry harbour
units. Peace saw a resumption of Balfour Beatty’s traditional work,
power stations and railway work dominating at home. Overseas, a
construction company was bought in Canada in 1953 and other work
included the Mto Mtwara harbour in
Tanganyika and the Wadi Tharthar
irrigation scheme in Iraq.
In 1969, Power Securities, which by then owned Balfour Beatty, was
taken over by cable manufacturer BICC. Then, in May 2000 BICC,
having sold its cable operations, renamed itself Balfour Beatty.
Balfour Beatty moved away from its traditional area of expertise in
1986 when it formed
Balfour Beatty Homes, building on a modest scale
from its office in Nottingham. It also opened offices in Paisley and
Leatherhead and in 1987 bought the Derbyshire firm of David M Adams to
give it an annualised production rate of 700 houses. Little more than
a year before the housing market collapsed, through its parent BICC,
Clarke Homes was bought.
By the mid 1990s, sales were down to only five hundred a year, and
although no financial figures were ever published, the housing
operation was believed to have suffered heavy losses. Balfour Beatty
Homes was renamed Clarke Homes and then sold to Westbury in 1995.
In October 2005,
Balfour Beatty were found guilty of breaching health
and safety laws and were fined £10 million for their involvement in
the Hatfield rail crash. The crash resulted in the death of four
people and injured more than 70.
Balfour Beatty then embarked on a series of acquisitions including
Mansell plc, another construction services business, for £42m in
November 2003, Birse plc, a construction & Civils contractor
based in the United Kingdom, for £32m in August 2006, Centex
Construction for £180m in February 2007 and Cowlin Construction,
a construction company based in
Bristol also in October 2007.
Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham
Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham under construction by Balfour
In February 2008, the company bought GMH Military Housing, a United
States based military accommodation business, for £180m and Dean
& Dyball, a leading regional contractor in the United Kingdom, for
In September 2009, the company agreed to buy Parsons Brinckerhoff, a
project management firm based in the United States, for
$626 million. In October 2010 the company bought Halsall
Group, a Canadian professional services firm, for
£33 million and then in November 2010 the company bought the
remnant of collapsed construction company
Rok plc for
In June 2011, it went on to buy Howard S. Wright, one of the oldest
contractors on the West Coast of the United States, for
£58 million as well as Fru-Con Construction, a US water and
wastewater contractor, for £12 million and in January 2013
it bought Subsurface Group, a consulting and engineering firm based in
the United States.
In August 2014, the company rebuffed three offers by rival Carillion
for the two companies to merge. The last bid, which valued Balfour
Beatty at £2.1 billion, was unanimously rejected by the Balfour
Beatty board on 20 August 2014, one day before a deadline for
negotiations to conclude. Balfour refused to allow an extension of
time for negotiations which could have prompted a fourth bid.
Carillion subsequently announced it would no longer pursue a merger
with its rival. The company sold
Parsons Brinckerhoff to WSP
Global for $1.24bn in October 2014.
In March 2009, the company was found to be a subscriber to the
Consulting Association, a firm which then prosecuted by the UK
Information Commissioner's Office for breaching the Data Protection
Act by holding a secret database of construction workers details,
including union membership and political affiliations, and six
enforcement notices were issued against
Balfour Beatty companies.
As of January 2010, individual workers had started suing the company
for being on the blacklist; the first of these cases, however, was
ruled in favour of the company.
Balfour Beatty was subsequently one of eight businesses involved in
Construction Workers Compensation Scheme in July
2014, though the scheme was condemned as a "PR stunt" by the GMB
union, and as "an act of bad faith" by Parliament's Scottish
Affairs Select Committee. In December 2017, Unite announced it had
issued high court proceedings relating to blacklisting against 12
major contractors including Balfour Beatty.
Blackfriars station redevelopment London, carried out by Balfour
Balfour Beatty designs, builds and maintains infrastructure across a
number of sectors. Their capabilities include:
Construction services: Design, construction management, refurbishment
and fit out, mechanical and electrical services, civil engineering,
ground engineering and rail engineering.
Support services: Installation, upgrade and maintenance of water, gas
and electricity networks; rail renewals; street and public space
management, operation and maintenance.
Infrastructure investments: A portfolio of long term (Public Private
Partnership ('PPP') concessions in the United Kingdom, primarily in
the education, health and roads/street lighting sectors.
A portfolio of long term military accommodation PPP concessions in the
Balfour Beatty also has interests in non PPP assets in
the United Kingdom.
The company is a 50% shareholder in Gammon Construction, based in Hong
Balfour Beatty is a member of Constructing Excellence, the
Business Services Association and Build UK, comprising members of the
Confederation of British Industry.
London Aquatics Centre
London Aquatics Centre built by Balfour Beatty
Balfour Beatty include:
The Kut Barrage, Iraq, 1939
The Churchill Barriers, Orkney, 1940-44
The Kielder Dam, Northumberland, 1982
Docklands Light Railway
Docklands Light Railway in London, 1985
Large parts of the
M25 motorway around London, 1986
Sheffield Supertram, 1994
The Channel Tunnel, 1994
The Cardiff Bay Barrage, 1999
The University Hospital of North Durham, 2001
The Lesotho Highlands Water Project, 2002
Nam Cheong Station, Hong Kong, 2003
Pergau Dam hydroelectric project in Malaysia, 2003
The M6 Toll, 2003
New facilities for the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, 2003
University College London Hospital, 2005
Igor I. Sikorsky Memorial Bridge, Connecticut, USA, 2006
Dubai Mall, 2008
The United States Capitol Visitor Center, 2008
King's Cross St. Pancras tube station
King's Cross St. Pancras tube station Northern Ticket Hall,
Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham
Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham near Selly Oak, Birmingham,
The East London Line, 2010
The A3 Hindhead Tunnel, 2011
The London Aquatics Centre, 2011
M25 motorway widening J16 to 23 and J27 to 30, 2012
Blackfriars station and Bridge
Construction Works, 2012
The new main facility for
Parkland Memorial Hospital
Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Texas,
The M4/M5 Managed Motorways project in Bristol, 2014
Providence Tower, London, 2015
Liverpool Street station
Liverpool Street station and
Whitechapel station tunnels
project, due to complete in 2018
Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route, due to complete in 2018
HS2 lots N1 and N2, working as part of joint venture, with main
construction work to start in 2018/9.
^ Balfour Beatty. "History". Retrieved 23 March 2007.
^ a b c Balfour Beatty. "Results for the year to 31 December
2017" (PDF). Retrieved 19 March 2018.
^ a b "Understanding Balfour Beatty". Balfour Beatty. Retrieved 13
^ a b c d e Ruth Slavid, Balfour Beatty’s 75 years, Construction
News Magazine, June 1984.
^ "Notes on Financial Times Actuaries Index 1969". August 2012.
^ Halstead, Richard (August 2012). "Shake-up will see BICC change to
Balfour Beatty". The Independent. London.
^ "BICC joins the flight from house-building". The Independent. 16
August 1995. Retrieved 17 January 2017.
^ Wellings, Fred: Dictionary of British Housebuilders (2006)
Troubador. ISBN 978-0-9552965-0-5,
^ "Hatfield crash firms fined a record £13.5m". 7 October 2005.
ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 12 September 2017.
Balfour Beatty set to buy Mansell". thefreelibrary.com. 21 November
2003. Retrieved 29 August 2012.
^ Richardson, Sarah (9 August 2006). "
Balfour Beatty issues notice to
Birse shareholders". Building.co.uk. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
Balfour Beatty pays £180 for US builder". ebscohost.com. Retrieved
29 August 2012.
^ "About us". Cowlin Construction. Archived from the original on 5
November 2010. Retrieved 19 November 2010.
^ Brodie, Sophie (13 February 2008). "
Balfour Beatty targets $350m US
military deal". The Daily Telegraph. UK. Retrieved 29 August
^ Bill, Tom (19 March 2008). "
Balfour Beatty buys Dean & Dyball
for £45m". Building.co.uk. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ Hoskins, Paul (17 September 2009). "Britain's
Balfour Beatty unveils
$626 mln U.S. buy". Uk.reuters.com. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ "Balfour buys Halsall Group for £33m". Building. 13 October 2010.
Retrieved 12 April 2012.
^ Balfour buys Rok businesses for £7 million, Reuters, 19
Balfour Beatty buys US contractor".
Construction Index. June 2011.
Retrieved 12 April 2012.
Balfour Beatty buys US contractor".
Construction Index. June 2011.
Retrieved 12 April 2012.
Balfour Beatty buys US energy storage business Subsurface Group".
Builder & Engineer. 3 January 2013. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
Balfour Beatty rejects latest
Carillion merger offer". The
Guardian. 20 August 2014. Retrieved 21 August 2014.
Carillion abandons pursuit of Balfour Beatty". FT. 20 August 2014.
Retrieved 17 January 2018.
Balfour Beatty completes $1.24bn sale of
Parsons Brinckerhoff to
WSP Global". City AM. 31 October 2014. Retrieved 1 December
^ Rob Evans (4 August 2009). "
Balfour Beatty among firms that bought
information on workers". Guardian. UK. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ "Firm sold workers secret data". BBC News. 6 March 2009. Retrieved
17 April 2011.
Construction blacklist". ICO. ICO. Retrieved 7 September
^ Rob Evans (20 January 2010). "Trade Unionist sues Balfour Beatty".
Guardian. UK. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ Hoyle, Rhiannon (8 March 2010). "
Balfour Beatty wins first case in
blacklisting scandal". Cnplus.co.uk. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ a b "
Construction blacklist compensation scheme opens". BBC News:
Business. BBC. 4 July 2014. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
^ "Scottish Affairs - Seventh Report Blacklisting in Employment: Final
Report". www.parliament.uk. Scottish Affairs Committee. Retrieved 7
^ Prior, Grant (4 December 2017). "Unite launches new round of
blacklisting legal action".
Construction Enquirer. Retrieved 4
^ "What we do". Balfour Beatty. Retrieved 16 April 2017.
^ "UK Contractors Group website". Ukcg.org.uk. Archived from the
original on 24 July 2011. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ "Churchill Barriers". Undiscovered Scotland. Retrieved 19 September
^ "Structure information". Sine.ncl.ac.uk. 26 March 2004. Archived
from the original on 13 June 2011. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
Docklands Light Railway
Docklands Light Railway Official Handbook, Stephen Jolly and Bob
Bayman (1986) ISBN 0-904711-80-3
^ "Motorway Archive – M25". Iht.org. Archived from the original on
10 May 2009. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ "Infrastructure maintenance becomes big business". Railway Gazette.
1 February 1997. Retrieved 7 October 2014.
Channel Tunnel on Structurae database" (in German).
En.structurae.de. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
Cardiff Bay Barrage
Cardiff Bay Barrage Report[dead link]
Balfour Beatty turns a huge profit on building schools and
hospitals". The Independent. 3 June 2014. Retrieved 2 April
^ Hildyard, Nicholas (10 July 2002). "Corner House". Corner House.
Archived from the original on 17 May 2008. Retrieved 17 April
^ "Government of Hong Kong Environmental Protection Department".
Epd.gov.hk. 31 December 2001. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ "Turkish Dam gets UK Support". BBC News. 1 March 1999. Retrieved 17
^ "Motorway Archive – M6 Toll". Iht.org. Archived from the original
on 23 June 2009. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ "PFI hospital opens its doors". BBC. 28 January 2002. Retrieved 1
^ University College London Hospital wins award Archived 24 January
2007 at the Wayback Machine.
^ "New bridge wins praise". Zwire.com. Retrieved 17 April
2011. [permanent dead link]
Balfour Beatty website: Burj Mall Dubai". Balfourbeatty.com. 10 May
2010. Archived from the original on 16 April 2008. Retrieved 17 April
^ "The Architect of the Capitol". Aoc.gov. 2 December 2008. Archived
from the original on 1 November 2008. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
Balfour Beatty to build King's Cross ticket hall Building, 25 May
^ "Long winding road to new super-hospital". Birmingham Post. 30
January 2006. Archived from the original on 21 May 2011. Retrieved 17
Balfour Beatty and
Carillion win £363m East London line contract
Guardian, 26 October 2006
^ "Mott McDonald". Tunnels.mottmac.com. Archived from the original on
14 July 2011. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ UK firms sign venue contracts Archived 6 August 2011 at the Wayback
Machine. London Olympics, 8 April 2008
^ Balfour Beatty/Skanska wins £5bn M25 deal
Construction News, 8 May
^ Blackfriars station: Pulling out the stops Building, 28 January 2011
^ Auditor questions millions of dollars in new Parkland hospital
construction contract Business Video, 26 April 2011
Balfour Beatty wins M4/M5 managed motorway contract for £77.6M NCE,
26 October 2012
Balfour Beatty lands first major London tower job". Construction
Enquirer. 10 June 2013. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
Balfour Beatty wins Liverpool St station
Crossrail contract The
Engineer, 13 January 2011
^ "Aberdeen bypass: Preferred bidder named as Connect Roads". BBC
^ "HS2 contracts worth £6.6bn awarded by UK government". the
Guardian. 17 July 2017. Retrieved 13 October 2017.
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