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Announcement provided by

Field Systems Designs Holdings plc · FSD

01/11/2017 07:00


FIELD SYSTEMS DESIGNS HOLDINGS PLC                                               


The Board presents the results of Field Systems Designs Holdings plc for the year ended 31 May 2017. It is pleasing to see the improvement in turnover and net profits reflected by the current year’s results. Equally encouraging is that although turnover from the water industry has been boosted by the mid-point cycle of expenditure under Asset Management Programme 6 (AMP6) it represents just two-thirds of overall group turnover. The contribution from the Energy from Waste sector (EfW) has been solidly maintained and rewards the sales efforts and investment made in the past. Working in these industries is still tough; with both contractual and operational complexities; however this year’s result reflects a solid performance.

AMP6 is the water industry’s sixth 5-year build and refurbishment programme running to April 2020. The changed emphasis of AMP6 expenditure on modernising and improving the water treatment systems in the UK by increasing efficiency is designed to avoid higher bills for consumers. There has been a shift from the concept of capex (capital expenditure) which placed emphasis on short term cost reduction; and opex (operational expenditure) cutting the cost of operations by reducing wastage and more effective pre-planned maintenance; to totex (total expenditure) which proposes building upgrades that will last longer and cost less to run in the long-term.

FSD is fully on board to assist water companies and their Tier 1 framework contractors chosen under AMP6 to manage their expenditure. FSD has successfully earned its position on their supply-chain arrangements through complex pre-qualification tests and has invested in talented engineering and installation personnel to be able to fully participate at the earliest stages of project development in decisions that direct efficiencies and cost-saving measures.

The group’s move to diversify into the Energy from Waste sector (EfW) has proven successful. The group has now successfully completed a multitude of major EfW contracts for different clients reflecting the confidence that it has now built in delivering these complex projects.

The board is positive about the outlook for group performance over the next financial year and is well-positioned with a strong cash balance and good opening order book to maximise the benefits from future opportunities.

D K Bird
31 October 2017


The financial information set out in this preliminary announcement does not constitute statutory accounts as defined in the Companies Act 2006.

The group statement of financial position as at 31 May 2017 and the unaudited group income statement for the year then ended have been extracted from the Group's 2017 statutory financial statements upon which the auditors opinion has not yet been issued.

These financial statements have not yet been delivered to the registrar of companies.

The directors of Field Systems Designs Holdings plc accept responsibility for this announcement and confirm compliance with the NEX Exchange Growth Market rules.

FIELD SYSTEMS DESIGNS HOLDINGS PLC                                               


The directors present the Strategic Report for Field Systems Designs Holdings Plc (‘the company’) and its subsidiary undertakings (together referred to as ‘the group’) for the year ended 31 May 2017.


The group achieved a turnover of £17.2 million for the year to 31 May 2017, an increase of 19% on last year, reflecting the pick-up in work from the Water Industry as project awards from AMP6 grow, and a continuation in work from the EfW sector.

Turnover was generated as follows:                       2017       2016

                                                            £          £

Water and Sewerage                                 10,931,388  8,986,968

Power generation and Energy from Waste              5,597,291  5,328,437

Transport and Tunnels                                 551,503     14,370

Building services, Maintenance,

Security, Instrumentation, Controls and Automation    134,303    153,949

                                                   __________ __________

                                                   17,214,485 14,483,724

                                                    =========  =========

Gross profit margins dipped slightly in the year ended 31 May 2017 to 7.6% from 7.8% last year. Gross margins were under downward pressure due to projects suffering from the tough contractual stances adopted in the Energy from Waste sector and operating difficulties within the Water Industry. Efforts made to bring in operational efficiencies have helped to protect gross margins, which although falling short of tender, have remained relatively constant despite the strong growth in turnover.

This contribution from operations left the group with operating profits for the year of £462,388 (2016: £335,028). The directors are pleased to report a solid group profit after tax of £672,123 for the year ended 31 May 2017 (2016: £307,523)


The Field Systems Designs group (FSD) focuses on delivering specialist mechanical and electrical design and installation works.

Water and Sewerage

FSD continued to take on Mechanical and Electrical (M&E) installation contracts across the sector as the group strives to maintain its reputation as a respected industry specialist.

Sales volumes improved significantly in the Water Industry in 2017 where 64% of turnover was derived (2016: 62%) with AMP6 well under way since its start in April 2015. Projects from the Anglian Water framework managed by @One Alliance started to come through during the year assisting the increase in sales volumes.

Major projects were completed for Thames Water during 2017 at Mogden, Basingstoke and Beddington. These projects, together with the long-delayed project at Lee Valley made up the majority of turnover in the Water sector.

Power generation and Energy from Waste

In 2017 33% of the improved turnover was derived from the Power and EfW sector (2016: 37%).

FSD worked primarily on Energy from Waste projects using Incineration, Gasification and Biomass technologies. The group undertook major electrical installation works at Welland, Levenseat and Hull on projects which use advanced thermal treatment gasification technology.

There was also work undertaken during the year on generators and outage works at Hartlepool Nuclear Power Station.

Transport and Tunnels

Electrical installation works undertaken on a London-based deep cable tunnel boosted turnover in this sector during the year. FSD continues to support tunnelling works as they arise, dealing competently with the complexities these projects involve.

Building services, Maintenance, Security, Instrumentation, Controls and Automation

FSD continues to deliver on smaller electrical installation service contracts in the commercial, security, and water sectors, building its reputation by offering its existing customer base quality, timeliness and value for money. The range of services includes lighting, power distribution, fire-alarm and security systems.

A small electrical workshop facility with tooling and equipment enables the group to produce in-house small isolator builds, lighting panel builds and remote monitoring enclosure pre-assemblies.

Mechanical fabrication and installation

This year the group continued to take on the mechanical elements of M&E installation contracts through its mechanical subsidiary which continues to build up its client base and its reputation for quality in-house fabrication and site installation services.

There were some major pipework fabrication and installation contracts undertaken during the year for projects under AMP6 such as water treatment works, pumping stations and CHP units.

Freehold property and investment property disposal

The group has held a freehold interest in commercial office premises in Dorking for a number of years. This property both housed the head office operations of the Group and generated rental income from tenants. The property was disposed of during the year, principally to create greater liquidity as the Group turnover increases and it embarks on larger projects which may place demands on working capital. The sale of the property generated a profit on disposal of £76,659, which was released to the group profit and loss account during the year.


The board regularly undertakes a review of business risks and uncertainties confronting the group and evaluates the significant project risks affecting its business. The following issues are the principal risks and uncertainties faced by the group.


The group’s business may be affected by market forces beyond its control. During a downturn all competing companies operating in the same industry sectors will be impacted by economic and political change that will alter the volume and value of available work.


On 23 June 2016, the people of the UK voted to leave the EU (Brexit); there continues to be volatility in financial markets, in currency markets and uncertainty over future actions by governments and businesses. The directors are considering the long-term impact of Brexit as the implications become known, however the short-term effects are inflationary primarily on material pricing as a consequence of weaker sterling. The board is acting on information that price increases are already being made by suppliers of materials and on the anticipated consequential effects that this will have on wage and price inflation generally.

Cyclical trading

The group is heavily reliant on the Water industry and its business is affected by the cyclical nature of the UK market caused by the 5-year Asset Management Programmes governed by OFWAT. At the beginning and the end of each AMP the water industry suffers a downturn as all competing companies operating in this industry are chasing a reduced volume of available work. The group mitigates these uncertainties by continually monitoring changes in its market sector, by focusing its sales efforts on non-water industry work flows and reviewing regularly forecasted sales opportunities to ensure that adequate sales volumes can be secured.

Skilled personnel

The group is dependent on the quality, attention and diligence of its personnel across the full spectrum of its skill disciplines. The group’s ability to attract, retain, train and motivate its skilled management and personnel will be reflected by business growth, profitability and a reputation for quality work. The group offers ‘added-value’ to its customers by offering a superior quality of project management, engineering and supervisory resource to complement its installation services. It is this wealth of knowledge and experience that sets FSD aside from its competition.

The board reviews personnel issues on a monthly basis and the Safety, Health, Environment and Quality manager (SHEQ) ensures there is investment in training programmes for site and management to broaden the competence, knowledge and experience of its employees. A number of mechanical and electrical apprentices were engaged during the year and following the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy the group intends to promote further training and improvement which will be available to all employees.

Health and safety

The group demands effective and successful management of health and safety risks by its supply-chain and similar demands are rightly made by its own customer base. Constant vigilance is paramount and any accident can have serious consequences. The commitment to enforcing safe working and adherence to regulation is strong at board level and flows through the organisation through qualified specialists, continual instruction and training. The group is extremely aware of the potential for an ‘incident’ to damage the group and gives constant attention to ensuring that this risk is kept to a minimum. The board, supported by a highly qualified health and safety specialist, endorses the importance of vigilant health and safety practices.

Long term contracts – bidding

The majority of group turnover is from fixed price contracts. By definition failure to adequately assess from client’s specifications the full scope of works, the correct pricing of that work and the time required to complete the work may have serious ramifications on profitability. There are specific risk management procedures in place to ensure that prices estimated for fixed price contracts are accurate and to ensure the correct costing of successful bids as the work progresses. The Tender Approval Procedure (TAP) is a key risk management tool used to minimise these risks. The TAP completion process identifies tender project risks, assesses the probability of their occurrence, their impact if they do occur and actions necessary to manage them down to an acceptable level. This procedure is used to ensure that commercial and contractual risks are monitored and managed by the board.

Long term contracts – costing

Fixed price contracts may also be subject to cost and time overruns, and the costs of additional work undertaken on variations may not be properly measured or fully recovered from the customer. The Project Summary Report (PSR) is a key risk management tool used to minimise these risks. The PSR completion process quantifies the value of project work undertaken after successful contract award, reviews the potential commercial risks and highlights any safety, technical, operational and environmental risks. This tool is used to ensure that commercial and contractual risks are monitored and managed by the board.


The group has a leading market position in sectors such as the water industry, and has also penetrated other sectors such as tunnelling, the power industry and energy from waste market to ensure a constant pipeline of enquiries. Nevertheless in an increasingly competitive environment and with cyclical volumes, accurate and competitive pricing is key to a successful contract award. The board constantly monitors the competitiveness of its cost base to ensure that its pricing remains competitive. Regular benchmarking and framework submissions also assist this process of review.

Financial instruments

The group uses financial instruments when required to provide a financing base for the group’s operations and derivatives are used to hedge against known commodity price and exchange rate exposures in contractual arrangements secured by the group. There may not always be instruments that provide accurate hedging or readily available markets for such hedges.

Cash flow

The group has a strong balance sheet and access to additional debt funding, and trades comfortably within its current working capital. Customers may require additional project work to be undertaken and the group may be required to fund this work for a period of time until the additional costs can be formally approved and funds received. The group may also experience an increase in the level of credit given to customers as a consequence of a change in their financial status or payment systems. In such circumstances there are short-term cash-flow consequences which are managed carefully by the finance department and any consequences mitigated.


The board uses both financial and non-financial (operational) performance indicators in the analysis and management of the business. The indicators relate both to financial and contractual performance and to other non-financial areas, including but not limited to, employees, health and safety, quality assurance, customer satisfaction and the environment. KPI’s are used by the management to run and monitor the business and many of the trends and results provide information which is commercially sensitive or is confidential in nature.


The main financial KPI used by the board is the measure of gross profit margin (being the gross project contribution as a percentage of turnover), as overheads can largely be controlled in line with budget, however margins on contractual activity are key to annual profitability.  An overall target margin is set annually in advance after review of overhead structure and subsequently represents the average bid margin used in pricing projects. It is designed to cover group overheads plus an element of profit. The gross profit margin used in the annual budgeting process is used to benchmark monthly performance and provides for a degree of margin erosion due to difficulties in fully recovering the value of additional works requested by customers. This varies according to market conditions.

The actual margin experience is reflected in the reported results and a detailed review is contained within the operational performance reported earlier in the Strategic Report.


The board measures customer satisfaction using an independent on-line survey assessment. A rolling 12-month record is kept of customer feedback on project completion with charitable donations used to encourage participation. Customers are asked to complete answers to a number of questions regarding group performance on a scale of 1 (poor) to 5 (excellent) including such areas as the focus on Safety and the Environment, completion of site work to programme, contract financial management and standard of workmanship. The responses are used by the board as an independent confirmation of group performance levels and negative feedback is vigorously followed up and improvement measures implemented. The group targets an average score of 4.5 and the overall responses have been very close to this target with an average of 4.3 during the year.

The ongoing independent assessments of the Group’s Safety, Quality and Environmental Standards are key to it maintaining the efficiency of its operational performance and adherence to high levels of site safety and environmental awareness.

The group is approved to the Quality Management Standard ISO 9001:2008, has an environmental management system approved to ISO 14001:2004, and a safety management system accredited to OHSAS 18001:2007. Achilles UVDB, the Utilities Vendor Data Base performance assessor, regularly review the group's processes for managing and installing electrical services, as well as its fault resolution procedures. The results of the 2017 Achilles audit were again excellent, reflecting 100% scores in all 4 areas of the management systems and 100% in 3 areas of the site evaluation with one score at 99% in the assessed areas of health & safety, environment, quality & social corporate responsibilities.

The Group has once again received a ROSPA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) Gold Award in health & Safety.

The group board has both corporate and personal responsibility to ensure that its operations are managed in a safe and environmentally controlled manner. In common with its industry the group measures its record on Health & Safety using an annual Accident Frequency Rate (AFR) chart.

The group targets a year on year decline in the AFR, which charts the number of lost time accidents per 100,000 man hours worked. 

The group AFR is currently zero.


FSD group is approved to the Quality Management Standard BS EN ISO 9001:2008. The British Standards Institute (BSI) and Achilles, the Utilities Sector procurement performance assessor, regularly review the group's processes for managing and installing electrical services, as well as its fault resolution procedures. Recent assessments have again been successfully completed with excellent results from the UVDB Verify audits.

The group is committed to a strategy that provides its clients with a high-quality service that conforms to the client’s requirements. This strategy includes a strong management commitment to quality, the recruitment and retention of high calibre, experienced and well-trained staff, properly documented procedures, processes and controls, and compliance with all regulatory and legal requirements. Quality Audits continue to be carried out across group sites on a regular basis to ensure compliance and to improve the group’s activities. The annual management review meeting assesses the group’s performance against targets and sets new targets. FSD are currently going through a transition period to update our Quality Management Standard to BS EN ISO 9001:2015 by the middle of 2018.


FSD group has an environmental management system approved to the international environment standard, ISO 14001:2004. The BSI and Achilles regularly review the group's processes for managing its impact on the environment. The group achieved its CEMARS (Certified Emissions Measurement and Reduction Scheme) accreditation in 2010 and now works to the principles of ISO 14064-1:2006 as it strives to minimise harm to the environment, prevent pollution and use best practice environment solutions to minimise its carbon foot-print. A risk assessment approach is used to manage environmental matters, and to identify and assess key environmental hazards arising from business activities and manage them appropriately. FSD are currently going through a transition period to update our International Environment Standard to ISO 14001:2015 by the middle of 2018.


A commitment to Health and Safety is the group’s number one priority. Every board meeting starts by focusing on preserving high safety standards and promoting a positive safety culture within the group, to ensure that our employees, customers, suppliers and the public are kept safe. FSD group has a safety management system implemented across all sites that has successfully been approved to the Health and Safety Management System BS OHSAS 18001:2007, (the internationally recognised standard for management of occupational health and safety risks).

There is a strong commitment at board level, supported by a highly qualified health and safety specialist, endorsing the importance of vigilant health and safety practices and investment in training for site and management to broaden the competence, knowledge and experience of its employees. This is supported by expert guidance provided by the EEF (Engineering Employers' Federation), ECA (Electrical Contractors Association) and CITB (Construction Industry Training Board). The group continues to establish safety initiatives and these are currently on target with a good safety record.


Group employee numbers have increased from an average of 101 in 2016 to 133 in 2017 reflecting the improved turnover and a varied mix of work scope during the year.

We are pleased to place on record the appreciation of the efforts and support given to the group by its employees, who continue to make a significant contribution to the group.


The group's pension deficit as at 31 May 2017 was reduced to Nil, a further reduction from £28,000 as at 31 May 2016. This is derived from the group's most recent actuarial review and reflects market conditions as at 31 May 2017. There was a £376,000 settlement gain released to the group profit and loss account during the year following the payment of cash equivalent transfer values to deferred members withdrawing from the defined benefit scheme,


The group recognises its responsibilities to the people it employs, its customers and suppliers, its shareholders, the wider community and to the environment. We are a well-managed, responsible and ethical group and are determined to be widely recognised for our quality of installation, the skills of our people and the seriousness with which we take our corporate responsibilities.


The group entered the new financial year with an opening order book of £13.0 million (2016: £13.0 million).

The group’s principal source of revenue is from the Water Industry and key to its success during AMP6 (Sixth Asset Management Programme) is its continued participation as part of the various frameworks being formulated by the Water Utilities selecting their preferred supply chain.

AMP6 runs for five years to April 2020. The Water Utilities have now mostly concluded their MEICA frameworks with different approaches to their mechanism and methodologies of spend. Sales volumes in the Water Industry have been strong this year in line with prior years and the spend is set to continue until AMP7.

FSD has established a strong reputation in delivering complex solutions on target and hopes to build on its considerable prior experience by participating fully with the Water Utilities during this investment phase. FSD continues to be fully involved in the prequalification processes to secure its position on frameworks and continues with its pursuit of strategic alliances with water process companies.

Despite the commitment to gain successful placement on water frameworks, a degree of FSD’s sales effort has been committed to industries outside of water and towards new technology sectors such as Energy from Waste.

In the Energy from Waste (EfW) sector there is still a substantial gap between the available waste fuel that is currently being land-filled or exported as Refuse-Derived Fuel (RDF) and the number of EfW facilities that are under construction and planned for the future. The large waste management companies, along with many independents, are investing heavily in new incineration and gasification projects to close this gap and consequently there is growth opportunity in this sector.

FSD are currently working on our 10th EfW project, and the recent decision by a prominent Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contractor to not pursue further opportunity from the EfW sector has opened the door to FSD establishing new relationships with competing EPC contractors who are now picking up the projects that have become available. FSD have already supported and bid a number of EfW and open-cycle gas turbine projects with such contractors and so are confident that as they secure an EPC role then FSD will be involved at an early stage.

FSD’s order intake on Combined Heat and Power (CHP) and generator installations has now reached £3M and on the back on this experience we are attracting new customers who may also lead FSD into other new market opportunities such as data centres and NHS installations. We are also in the early stages of engaging with projects in the food and beverage sector and the early signs are positive. FSD have some close relationships with established players in the nuclear and direct data-centre markets and have a good chance of securing new business opportunities.

The group continues to confidently target other MEICA turn-key solutions with its in-house M&E capabilities, using joint venture alliances and other working arrangements to deliver.

The board continues to react to customer demands and invest in training to keep standards high, whilst creating operational efficiencies to best position the business for the opportunities ahead.

On behalf of the board

P J Haines
Managing Director
31 October 2017

FIELD SYSTEMS DESIGNS HOLDINGS PLC                                              

for the year ended 31 May 2017

                                                            2017    2016

                                                               £       £

TURNOVER                                              17,214,485 14,483,7

Cost of sales                                       (15,909,564) (13,358,

                                                         _______ _______

GROSS PROFIT                                           1,304,921 1,125,71

Operating expenses                                     (842,533) (790,689

                                                         _______ _______

GROUP OPERATING PROFIT                                   462,388 335,028

Defined benefit scheme settlement gain                   376,000       -

Gains arising on fair value of investment property             -  54,000

Interest receivable and similar income                     8,182     375

Interest payable and similar charges                     (8,017) (17,746)

                                                         _______ _______


ACTIVITIES BEFORE                                        838,553 371,657

Taxation                                               (166,430) (64,134)

                                                         _______ _______


ACTIVITIES AFTER TAXATION                                672,123 307,523

                                                          ======  ======


Basic                                                12.5p         5.70p

                                                    ======        ======

Diluted                                              12.4p         5.69p

                                                    ======        ======

All operations are continuing.

FIELD SYSTEMS DESIGNS HOLDINGS PLC                                             

As at 31 May 2017

                                                   2017      2016

                                                      £         £


Tangible assets                                 463,394   993,231

Investment property                                   -   756,000


Stock                                           501,117    19,117

Debtors                                       5,663,174 4,068,750

Cash at bank and in hand                      2,705,945 1,512,874

                                               ________  ________

                                              8,870,236 5,600,741

                                               ________  ________


Amounts falling due within one year           6,095,391 4,416,980

                                               ________  ________

NET CURRENT ASSETS                            2,774,845 1,183,761

                                               ________  ________


LIABILITIES                                   3,238,239 2,932,992


Amounts falling due after more than one year     33,587    50,713


Deferred taxation                                31,000     7,400

Post-employment employee benefits                     -    28,000

                                               ________  ________

NET ASSETS                                    3,173,652 2,846,879

                                                =======   =======


Called up share capital                         569,250   569,250

Share premium account                           158,750   158,750

Other reserves                                  370,033   370,033

Profit and loss account                       2,075,619 1,748,846

                                               ________  ________

TOTAL SHAREHOLDERS’ EQUITY                    3,173,652 2,846,879

                                                =======   =======

Approved by the board and signed on behalf of the board and authorised for issue on

31 October 2017 by:-

Bruce Smith......................................Director

Philip Haines....................................Director

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