Transfield Services Ltd of Australia has conditionally bought New Zealand property & asset manager Serco Group NZ Ltd from its British parent, Serco Group plc, for $10.7 million & the assumption of $7.2 million in net debt.
Transfield expects to complete the deal by 31 May.
Serco has $70 million annual revenue, a $160 million contract order book & 800 employees. Its clients include the Ministry of Defence, local bodies, Transit NZ, Telecom & NZ Steel.
Transfield managing director Peter Watson said the transaction would double the size of its New Zealand business. “Along with our successful joint venture with Worley, we are one of the largest & most diversified dedicated service providers in New Zealand.”
Transfield’s New Zealand general manager, Tony Fisher, said the company now had nearly 2000 employees and offices or depots in virtually every major city & town.
Serco didn’t seem to be in any need to sell â€“ a month ago it announced strong profit growth in 2003. Turnover rose 17.3% to Â£1.56 billion, profit before tax & goodwill (Â£14.1 million goodwill amortisation) rose 17.4% to Â£67 million, earnings/share before goodwill rose 15.1% to 11p, pretax profit rose 8% to Â£52.9 million, but net earnings/share rose only 1.2% to 7.75p. Free cashflow rose from Â£9.7 million to Â£47 million.
Websites: Transfield Services