By Andy Sambidge
Burj Khalifa fit-out firm posts $16m profit during 'challenging year' of project delays
Depa Ltd, the interior contractor that fitted out Dubai's Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower, on Monday posted net profit of AED59.1m ($16m) for 2011 after a AED205.7m loss the previous year.
The profit came from revenues of AED1.7bn, down from AED1.8bn in 2010, the company said in a statement.
"Overall, 2011 was a difficult year in which to operate across the globe, with Depa's operations being impacted by the global economic environment regardless of which country in which the company was based," the statement said.
Depa said that many of its projects were delayed with project works starting many months after originally intended.
"As a result, revenues for the year were impacted by these delays," it said, adding that general and administrative (G&A) costs had increased as a result.
Depa's backlog stood at a record level of AED3.8bn at the end of 2011, more than AED1bn more than a year earlier, the statement said.
This was driven by government-funded GCC construction projects including the New Doha International Airport, the biggest contract in its history at AED929m.
Depa added that it is currently eyeing future opportunities from large infrastructure work in the GCC and South Asia, medical centres in the MENA region and hospitality work across its core GCC, Asia and Africa markets.
Mohannad Sweid, CEO, Depa Limited, said: "Our strategy of executing luxury interiors around the world anchored the business through the more difficult years.
"This has helped us end 2011 in a stronger position than a year ago and marks 2011 as a turnaround year in which our revenues stabilised, our gross profit margins returned to historical norms and our backlog grew significantly.
"With Depa's backlog at a record high, the company is poised for growth in the coming years across the many geographies in which we operate."
He said the company continues to pursue a diversified client and project base and is currently operating in 20 countries around the world.
Revenue in Asia increased to AED225m while Depa saw the wider GCC account for a larger proportion of the backlog with an increase from 48 percent in 2010 to 53 percent in 2011.
This included the signing of the New Doha International Airport and the King Abdullah Petroleum Studies & Research Centre contract.
In addition the company continues to operate in high-growth markets such as Angola and Azerbaijan.