Grocon on brink of administration

Original article by Ben Wilmot
The Australian – Page: 13 & 14 : 23-Nov-20

Troubled construction company Grocon was said to be in talks over the weekend of 21-22 November about the appointment of administrators, although no move has yet been made. Grocon has been involved in a number of disputes in recent times, including with Infrastructure New South Wales, against which Grocon has launched a $270 million legal action. Grocon head Daniel Grollo recently said that its creditors would be "first in line" to be paid if it wins its action against Infrastructure NSW. Grocon’s latest problems relate to a project in Melbourne, where it is said that sub-contractors are owed around $8 million. Grocon is building a tower for Impact Investment under a fixed-price contract, and claims that it has not been paid by Impact since May.

CORPORATES
GROCON PTY LTD, INFRASTRUCTURE NEW SOUTH WALES, IMPACT INVESTMENT GROUP PTY LTD

Construction down by $5b over two years

Original article by Michael Bleby
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 39 : 5-Nov-20

The Australian Construction Industry Forum has forecast that construction activity will fall by 3.2 per cent in 2020-21 due to the impact of COVID-19. Construction work in the accommodation sector is tipped to fall by 34 per cent, while a 23 per cent decline in entertainment and recreation projects is expected. However, the ACIF expects an increase in construction work in the industrial property, health and aged-care sectors. Activity in the residential construction sector is expected to remain subdued for several years, but growth in home renovations is forecast.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY FORUM

Building shortages threaten site shutdowns

Original article by Rosie Lewis, Ben Packham
The Australian – Page: 6 : 10-Mar-20

Australian Shop & Office Fitting Industry Association CEO Gerard Ryan says its members are looking at delays to projects of up to six weeks because the corona­virus outbreak is delaying the supply of products from overseas. The outbreak has also prompted calls for a national security strategy to boost the nation’s stocks of medicine and fuel. Industry Minister Karen Andrews says the federal government is looking to increase local manufacturing to help ease supply chain disruptions, although she says she is hearing anecdotally that "the supply chains are OK".

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN SHOP AND OFFICE FITTING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION

Builders and developers struggle with supply shortages

Original article by Nila Sweeney, Michael Bleby
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 9 : 3-Mar-20

Australian builders and property developers are having to deal with disruptions to projects as a result of not being able to get supplies from China due to the coronavirus. A lack of elevator parts and components is of particular concern to builders, with WT Partnership Australia executive director David Stewart noting that any delays in having a building’s lift installed has a knock-on effect in terms of the rest of the building schedule. Supply-chain problems can cause delays of up to $200,000 a day on the biggest building sites.

CORPORATES
WT PARTNERSHIP AUSTRALIA

Home building hopes turn positive

Original article by Michael Bleby
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 29 : 16-Jan-20

The latest quarterly survey of the construction sector by the ANZ Bank and the Property Council of Australia suggests that building activity in the residential market will improve in the second half of 2020. The index of expectations for housing construction over the next 12 months has risen by 14.6 points in the survey for the March 2020 quarter; it is the largest quarterly gain since the three months to December 2013. PCA CEO Ken Morrison says the latest survey indicates that housing affordability will continue to be a key issue in 2020.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, PROPERTY COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED

Construction falls for fifth quarter running

Original article by Michael Bleby
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 31 : 28-Nov-19

Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows that residential construction activity fell by 3.1 per cent quarter-on-quarter in the three months to September, to $18.3bn in seasonally adjusted terms. Meanwhile, engineering construction declined by 0.2 per cent in the September quarter, to $21.1bn, although non-residential construction increased by four per cent to $11.4bn. Gareth Aird of the Commonwealth Bank says the residential construction sector continues to be a drag on the economy.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA

Housing construction ticks up slightly in June

Original article by Michael Bleby
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 26 : 10-Oct-19

New figures show that residential building starts increased by 1.1 per cent in the June quarter, following declines in the previous two quarters. A 10.6 per cent decline in detached-housing starts was offset by a 21 per cent increase in apartment starts. Meanwhile, housing starts for the year to June totalled 196,867; this was the first year-on-year fall since September 2014. Ernst & Young’s chief economist Joanne Masters expects a further decline in residential construction activity.

CORPORATES
ERNST AND YOUNG, HOUSING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION LIMITED, COMMONWEALTH SECURITIES LIMITED, TAMAWOOD LIMITED – ASX TWD

Construction companies in NSW collapsing at record rate as building slowdown bites

Original article by Nick Sas
abc.net au – Page: Online : 27-Sep-19

One hundred and sixty nine New South Wales-based construction companies went under in the June quarter, the most since the September 2015 quarter. This is according to ASIC figures, with the number of NSW construction companies that collapsed in 2018-19 being 101 up on the previous financial year. Industry experts suggest the increase in company failures is a reflection of the slowdown in the NSW housing and apartment sector, with Association of Independent Insolvency Practitioners president Stephen Hathway saying there is little doubt the industry is "stressed".

CORPORATES
ASSOCIATION OF INSOLVENCY PRACTITIONERS

Building slowdown tipped to hit bottom in 2019-20

Original article by Nick Lenaghan
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 31 : 29-Jul-19

New building starts are expected to fall by eight per cent in 2019-20, according to BIS Oxford Economics, having fallen by an estimated 12 per cent in 2018-19. An improvement in non-residential construction in 2019-20 is tipped to be outweighed by a decline in residential activity. However, BIS Oxford Economics expects building activity to rebound in 2020-21 and the years beyond, as factors such as new first-home buyer stimulus programs and cuts to interest rates help to generate a recovery in the market.

CORPORATES
BIS OXFORD ECONOMICS PTY LTD

Fix crisis in building industry

Original article by Brad Norington, Richard Ferguson
The Australian – Page: 1 & 2 : 15-Jul-19

Private building certifiers are struggling to secure professional indemnity insurance in the wake of the problems with cracks in apartment buildings and inflammable cladding that have afflicted the construction industry. Master Builders Australia CEO Denita Wawn says the issue has the potential to see the sector grind to halt, and the MBA and other industry groups have called on the federal government to intervene to fix the crisis.

CORPORATES
MASTER BUILDERS’ ASSOCIATION