Ramboll achieved a gross revenue of DKK 7 billion in the first half year of 2019, which is 24% higher than the same period in 2018. Organic growth was 3.9% compared to 7.1% in the first half of 2018. Operating profit before amortisation (EBITA) was DKK 308.5 million compared to DKK 275.2 million in the first half of 2018. At 4.4%, the EBITA margin was below the same period last year (4.8%). The EBITA margin was as expected impacted by the inclusion of OBG which has been characterized by a high degree of low-margin revenue through subcontractors on specific large projects. On a like-for-like basis, the underlying margin was 0.4%-point higher than same period last year. The number of employees grew by 9% during the first half of 2019 mainly due to the acquisition of the US engineering and design consultancy, OBG.
“Ramboll continues its strong growth with good performances in the UK and in the Nordics and in our global Water, Transport and Buildings markets,” reports Group CEO Jens-Peter Saul. “I am also pleased that the integration of OBG is progressing according to plan and that our combined skills have led to more projects than expected for our first half-year together,” he says.
“As expected, the inclusion of OBG has a temporary dilution effect on our margin. However, our general performance is good and on a like-for-like basis our operating margin is higher than last year,” he says.
“Looking ahead we will continue to integrate OBG and improve the operating margin of the newly acquired operations. Further, we will continue our investments in digitalisation and innovation, including our global incubator program, to support our ambition to become a digital leader in our industry. We expect to continue the good growth curve and to finish 2019 with a higher operating profit compared to 2018,” says Jens-Peter Saul.
Strengthened position in the US
On 1 January 2019, Ramboll acquired the US engineering and design consultancy OBG, adding 900 employees to Ramboll, and established a new Principal Business Unit for the Americas with 2,000 global experts within water, energy, environment and health.
“OBG has had an excellent start of the year with a strong growth but also improving profitability. The integration of the company is progressing according to plan and we are successfully harvesting the revenue synergies between Ramboll’s consulting-oriented business in the US and OBG’s strong project execution capabilities. Our combined strongholds put us in a unique position to deliver multi-disciplinary, integrated solutions to the global challenges caused by megatrends such as urbanisation, climate change and resource scarcity,” says Jens-Peter Saul.
In one of the most notable joint project wins following the acquisition Ramboll will contribute to the innovative development of a new vision for rebuilding and enhancing the Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River shoreline in North America as part of REDI – the Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative. REDI is focused on addressing the immediate and long-term resiliency needs of this geography which has been hard-hit by flooding, while also enhancing economic development and lake health. The State of New York chose Ramboll for its domestic capabilities coupled with European climate change and flood resilience experience.
Major large scale projects worldwide
Ramboll has won significant major projects elsewhere during the first half year of 2019.
In Denmark, DSB (Danish State Railways) has chosen Ramboll as full-service consultant for the construction of three large workshop facilities for train maintenance in three cities in Denmark. The workshops will be central to the overall rollout of electric train service that will provide Denmark with new climate-friendly trains.
In Norway, Ramboll was chosen as consultant for the new Øya pumping station in Trondheim. The station will drastically raise the capacity and security for sewage handling in one of Trondheim’s major areas. In planning and building the station, the advanced use of BIM, 3D scanning and other digital tools were utilised. Next step is to implement a digital operation and maintenance system for the pumping station.
In Sweden, Ramboll is making railway history with the planning of the next generation of high-speed rail network resulting in faster and more sustainable passenger transport. It’s been 150 years since Sweden's main rail links were built. Now tracks for new high-speed rail link will be laid and Ramboll has been commissioned by the Swedish Transport Administration to plan the route through the city Linköping as well as the route Gothenburg-Borås.
In Finland, Ramboll was chosen as consultant to draw up a masterplan on the potential expansion of Tampere tramway system whose purpose is to make the everyday life and transportation easier in the city whose average population has grown by more than 2,000 annually. The first phase of the modern tramway system is currently under construction and is expected to be in operation in 2021. If the extension is implemented, the length of the regional tram-way system will be about 32 km.
In the UK, Ramboll is providing civil and structural engineering for two important new residential schemes in Wandsworth in central London. These two schemes will provide 950 apartments with associated retail and leisure facilities. The development forms a significant part of the client Legal & General’s private rental strategy, helps to address London’s housing crisis and provides homes appropriate for today’s lifestyles.