The boss of Aberdeen’s biggest company said this morning that it was looking to the future with confidence as a much-stronger operation.

Wood, the leading engineering and consultancy business, reported revenues for 2022 of £4.418billion – a year-on-year rise of 8.3% at constant currency.

Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) were marginally ahead at £312million at constant currency, while the order book is now nearly £5billion.

Chief executive Ken Gilmartin said today: “"We are pleased to have delivered results in line with expectations for 2022, including a return to revenue growth - with 8% growth at constant currency.

“This was achieved in a year of major change for the group, under new leadership, as we addressed legacy issues, transformed our balance sheet and launched a new strategy.

"Our strategy is already delivering. We started 2023 with good momentum - our order book for delivery in 2023 is up 10%, headcount is up 8% and financial guidance for 2023 is in line with our medium-term financial targets of adjusted EBITDA growth at mid-to-high single-digit compound annual growth rate - with momentum building as our strategy delivers.


“We now we look to the future with confidence as a much stronger company."

Wood's worldwide workforce is now around 37,000, with more than 6,000 of them in the UK.

The Granite City team currently totals 4,500.

The group has come a long way since Sir Ian Wood saw the huge opportunity presented by the birth of the UK offshore oil industry in the 1970s.

Energy services are responsible for two-thirds of its business, while materials make up the other third.

Materials is a wide-ranging sector which takes in everything from designing facilities for pharmaceutical companies to delivering projects in the transportation and water sectors.

Apollo wants Wood

Wood was in the news in recent weeks when it emerged that US private-equity firm Apollo Global Management wanted to buy the Granite City company.

It was March 7 when Wood revealed that Apollo had made a fourth unsolicited move for the company.

The slightly-improved offer of 237p per share valued the operation at £1.64billion.

Wood said its board believed the latest proposal continued to undervalue the group and was therefore minded to reject the move.

The firm’s shares opened this morning at just under 200p.

Wood had said in February that it had rejected three unsolicited bids from the private-equity firm.

Shares moved up

News of the moves had led to Wood shares shooting up.

Apollo’s interest in the company has fuelled fears that cheaply-valued UK businesses are vulnerable to foreign takeovers this year, as cash-rich private-equity firms and corporates take advantage of suppressed prices in London.

Wood is the latest UK company to be targeted by private equity.

Apollo now has until April 19 to announce a firm intention to make an offer for Wood or to say that it does not intend to.

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