Kier Group

Ticker KIE

Today's data summary

Market closed
% change
+1.50%
Price Pence
507.50
Change
+7.50
As of 19:55 15 Feb 2019
Market cap. Pound sterling
822.74 million
As of 19:55 15 Feb 2019

Latest updates

Kier thanks outgoing chief Mursell

The board would like to thank Haydn for his contribution during eight years on the board, firstly as finance director and then as chief executive. On behalf of the board, I would like to wish him every success in the future.

Kier board statement

Pressures on construction outsourcer Kier

Graphic showing proposed development at Kings Cross, London
Kier Group

Some background to today's news from major UK infrastructure group Kier, and the announcement that boss Haydn Mursell is to stand down immediately.

Investors took up just 38% of Kier's share issue in December, leaving banks struggling to shift the remainder.

The firm, which says it will meet expectations for the financial year ending 30 June, has contracts for major UK construction projects, including London's Crossrail link.

Other large outsourcing-construction firms have also showed signs of recent strain - Interserve shares fell sharply last month and Carillion collapsed early last year.

Keir Group boss Mursell stands down

Kier Group hoarding
Getty Images

Construction firm Kier Group has said its chief executive Haydn Mursell, will stand down from the board of directors.

The board has asked chairman Philip Cox to act as executive chairman, working with finance director Bev Dew and chief operating officer Claudio Veritiero until a new boss is appointed.

"The executive search for an external successor to Mr. Mursell commences immediately," the firm said.

Saddled with shares

Kier
Getty Images

At least five financial firms - Numis, Peel Hunt, Citi, HSBC and Santander - were standing behind the Kier rights issue.

This means Kier gets the £250m even though shareholders refused to back the cash call.

But it means those firms are left with shares they did not intend to hold.

Haydn Mursell, Chief Executive of Kier, said: "Following the completion of the £250m rights issue, Kier enters 2019 with a strong balance sheet which puts us in an excellent competitive position."

Rights flop

Keir
Getty

Barely a third of the shareholders in Kier Group have backed its £250m cash call.

The engineering company said it had received acceptances representing 37.66% of the shares being issued.

The proceeds of the rights issue are to be used to pay down existing debts, the company had said in late November when it was first announced.

Debt download

Kier banner
Getty Images

Kier has set out three reasons why it needs to raise £250m to tackle its debts:

  • While its banking facilities are sorted out until 2022, lenders are preparing to cut their exposure to the sector. This could have an impact on its ability to obtain shorter-term credit.
  • Potential clients and customers are increasingly focusing on the financial strength of companies.
  • Pressure to pay its own contractors faster.

Kier cash call

share price
BBC

Shares in engineering company Kier have fallen sharply after its announcement of a £260m cash call on shareholders.

The proceeds of the rights issue will be used to pay down existing debts, the company said in an unexpected announcement this afternoon.

The company said that debt was" increasingly a key focus for stakeholders in the industry and the board recognises the importance of a strong balance sheet to take advantage of opportunities to underpin the group's future performance".