Quartzelec increases operating profits in the year to Sept 2020, despite challenge of global pandemic

23 March 2021

Quartzelec, a leading independent engineering service provider with facilities throughout the UK and an ever‑extending global reach, like so many other businesses has been impacted by the operating restrictions imposed due to Covid-19, but responsive management and strategic planning has ensured the ongoing success of the business. Whilst turnover took a downward turn similar to 2018 levels, operating profits (before impairments) were up 31.9% to £4.280m for the financial year to 30 September 2020.

Accounting for the impact of Covid-19 from March 2020, the directors’ primary concern during the second half of the year was on the health, safety and wellbeing of both colleagues and customers, while still offering essential services wherever possible. Significant safeguarding activities were introduced, including providing appropriate PPE, ensuring COVID-secure work environments and establishing flexible homeworking, where practical, all in accordance with Government guidelines.

Stephen Morrison, Managing Director, commented: "It has been a difficult year for most businesses, but our balance sheet remains strong with high net assets and a good cash position. Our local businesses have maintained strong communication with their customers with strategic decisions taken at a local level yet accessing central support for many functions. The overall objective is for the business to be the international partner of choice within engineering services and to grow organically. Trading up to mid-March 2020 was relatively unaffected, however, as customers closed sites to comply with safeguarding requirements much of our work was reduced to essential services”.

“UK based employees that were unable to safely work were furloughed from March under the Governments’ Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. As clients adapted their working arrangements to be COVID-19 secure, activity gradually restarted. The introduction of the flexible furlough scheme from 1 July helped the company better deal with the variable demand it faced due to the pandemic. Unfortunately, some restructuring to meet customers’ future resourcing requirements, was also required with a small overall decrease in employee numbers as part of the programme to deliver improved lifetime customer value. The directors have also developed and implemented sound strategic financial judgements, helping consolidate the balance sheet.”

Both the UK and International operations have been impacted but Quartzelec places special emphasis on its people and has continued to develop workplace safety and instigate employee training programmes to enable customers to receive enhanced services. Despite the pandemic delaying some initiatives, there is a continued focus on attaining ISO standards for environmental practices and for best practice in occupational health and safety management across all business locations.

Stephen Morrison further commented: " The economic environment is expected to remain challenging over the coming months, particularly as the long-term impact of Covid-19 and Brexit become better understood. Whilst the level of turnover and profitability will inevitably be impacted in the short-term, the company should continue to trade profitably in the forthcoming financial year. We continue to support the UK Utilities and Rail markets, and target specialist Rotating Machine opportunities particularly within the global Power Markets, combined with a selective tendering process which has been the successful long-term strategy for improving our operating results.”


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Providing vital services and support to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), Ministry of Defence (MOD) and UK construction sector, Quartzelec’s global market support extends across power generation including hydro and renewables; oil, gas & petro-chemical; other energy production and distribution industries; metals and mining; manufacturing, communications, construction and maritime.




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