CFO Adrian Macartney on first Aveng Group profit since 2014

Adrian explains that the profit was possible because of improved performance by its subsidiaries.

Aveng Group has announced its first headline per share profit since 2014 after all its main subsidiaries made profits in the six months to December 2020. The group also reported a revenue increase of 53 percent driven by improved performance at its subsidiary, McConnell Dowell.

“First and foremost, this is possible because of the opportunities that we have in our various markets,” says CFO Adrian Macartney. He explains that Australia presents a strong, infrastructure-led economy. New Zealand, equally, has a government investing in infrastructure, and the medium to long term demand for infrastructure in Southeast Asia presents great opportunities. “We believe in the commodities markets, and Moolmans [one of Aveng’s subsidiaries] has good opportunities in both South Africa and across the African continent.”

Adrian also attributes the growth in revenue to Aveng’s people, saying it is a result of a sustained effort over three years. He explains that turnarounds are about people and resilience, saying that Aveng has spent significant time and effort rebuilding teams over the last three years. “Our people are incredibly dedicated across the businesses and it is great to see the impact of their efforts come to fruition,” he says. “I think that it is pleasing to see the team’s success when people stay the course, in what have been some exceptionally challenging times.”

He adds that what has also helped was the discipline of being clear about what the company pursues and what it doesn’t. “Each week we review our forward looking opportunities and understand the current and future levels of tender activity. We understand what we are good at, the types of projects and clients we want to work on.”

Adrian says Aveng needs to continue delivering a consistent performance to the market. “The market would not have trusted us to continue if there was not some belief in future profitability and return. We need to make sure that we operationally perform to deliver those returns.”

He concludes that the company has been focused inwardly for a long time and now it needs to turn its attention outwards.