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Witteveen+Bos realises turnover growth and expands workforce in 2015

(15-03-2016)

The turnover of international engineering and consultancy firm Witteveen+Bos N.V. has increased from EUR 119 million in 2014 to EUR 130 million in 2015. The workforce also grew: the company welcomed its one thousandth employee in mid-2015, and the total number of employees amounted to 1,056 at the end of the year. In 2015 Witteveen+Bos made significant contributions to projects of all sizes. Karin Sluis and Henk Nieboer, who make up the Board of Directors, can look back on a year of healthy financial and non-financial performance. The annual results for 2015 will be officially adopted at the General Meeting of Shareholders to be held on 5 April 2016.

Financial results
With the projects it worked on all over the world in 2015, Witteveen+Bos realised a total turnover of EUR 130 million, representing an 8.8 % increase compared to 2014. Operating from a stable home market in the Netherlands, the engineering and consultancy firm succeeded in leveraging international growth opportunities in countries like Kazakhstan and Belgium. The company further expanded its worldwide presence by opening an office in London (UK), and by converting its project office in Accra (Ghana) into a permanent presence. In Belgium, Witteveen+Bos acquired environmental consultancy firm MAVA AES N.V.

The growth in turnover and expansion of the workforce was accompanied by healthy financial results. With an EBITDA of EUR 21.3 million (2014: EUR 22.0 million), a net result of EUR 14.3 million (2014: EUR 15.3 million), and a net profit margin of 11.1 % (2014: 12.8 %), the results were comparable to those of 2014.

Sustainable Development Goals
Managing Director Karin Sluis: ‘We consider it important to help tackle today’s global challenges through our projects. And although we aim for growth and good financial results, we do not regard these as ends in themselves. Healthy financial results are a necessary precondition to do our real job: contributing to the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in our projects. The SDGs were adopted by the United Nations at the end of 2015, and are aimed at ensuring a socially, ecologically and economically sustainable world by 2030. As an international engineering and consultancy firm, we are both willing and able to contribute to the attainment of these goals. In order to obtain a clear picture of our contribution, we performed a materiality analysis in 2015. For the first time, we will publish an integrated Annual Report that gives an account of both our financial and non-financial performance based on clearly defined indicators.’

Witteveen+Bos has developed six sustainable design principles, and aims to maximise its impact by applying them in all its projects worldwide. The company also advances the SDGs through its own operations. In 2015 we continued to promote sustainable business travel and the reduction of CO2 emissions throughout the supply chain. As a result, CO2 emissions per FTE dropped to 4.38 tonnes of CO2 (2014: 4,66 tonnes of CO2).

‘Working with Impact’
In 2015, Witteveen+Bos worked on various ‘Room for the River’ projects in the Netherlands to prevent flooding as a result of urbanisation and climate change. Its design for the Stadsbaan Tunnel in Utrecht will contribute to the development of the Leidsche Rijn district. In Kazakhstan Witteveen+Bos designed a motorway, a port, and a canal for the Cargo Transportation Route, which will connect the country’s rich onshore oil fields to the Caspian Sea. The Oosterweel Link was an important project in Belgium. This project involves construction of a tunnel in Antwerp to complete the city’s ring road. The tunnel will make the city easier to reach and enhance the human environment: traffic jams will decrease, air quality will improve, and noise nuisance will be reduced.

Witteveen+Bos has its roots in Deventer, the Netherlands, and will celebrate its seventieth anniversary in 2016. Director Henk Nieboer: ‘Our company has attained its current status thanks to the valuable experience we have gained over the past 70 years by tackling typically Dutch challenges in the field of water, infrastructure, the environment and construction. In the years to come, we will continue the internationalisation of Witteveen+Bos while not losing sight of our specific Dutch profile.’