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**Agenda subject to change

Breaking out of the low margin treadmill – how UK construction must change to survive
Building’s annual Top 150 contractors and housebuilders survey provides detailed insight into the state of the industry by revealing the turnover and profit of the biggest players. The 2018 survey showed the top ten contractors averaged a margin of just 0.38% which helps explain why Carillion failed and the reason for the problems experienced by Interserve and Kier. One of the reasons why margins are so tight is the inefficient nature of construction – too many projects end up going over budget and being delivered late. The Construction Sector Deal, the sector specific part of the government’s Industrial Strategy sets tough targets for construction to improve its performance. These include cutting costs of projects by a third and delivering these in half the time, goals that can only be achieved by embracing digital technologies and offsite manufacture. In this half day conference we reveal the results of Building’s 2019 Top 150 contractors and housebuilders, what this says about the state of the industry and how it can make the transition needed to improve performance.

15.00 – 15.30: Registration and networking

15.30 – 15.45: Keynote – Martin Hewes presents the Top 150 contractors and housebuilders results

15.45 – 16.45: Panel debate The Top 150 contractors and housebuilders – what does it say about the state of the industry?
We exclusively reveal the results of the 2019 Top 150 contractors and housebuilders and discuss what the results say about the current state of the construction industry.


Chair: Chloe McCulloch, Editor, Building

Patricia Moore,UK Managing Director, Turner & Townsend
Ian Marson
, UK Head of Construction, Ernst & Young
Robert Rotbart, Group Construction Manager, Derwent London
Stephen Beechey, Group Strategy Director & Managing Director – Government Affairs, Wates
Rod Stiles, Regional Director London, BAM Construction

16.45 – 17.00: Tea break

17.00 – 17.15: Keynote – Embracing new technology: Considerations for a successful contractual framework –  Jonathan More, Partner, Fenwick Elliott 

17.15 – 18.15: Panel debate – Making the most of digital – how can the industry make the leap?
The Construction Sector Deal sets ambitious targets of reducing the cost of construction by 30% with a 50% reduction in the time taken from project inception to completion. The wafer thin margins of big contractors means achieving this target will be extremely challenging.
Achieving greater efficiency means embracing digital technologies and modern methods of construction but this requires investment, taking risks and culture change. Which innovations does the industry need to prioritise and how can it make the transition to a better future?


Kate Ives, Development Director, Wates Residential South
Paul McNerney, director of core projects, Laing O’Rourke
Dale Sinclair, director of technical practice, Aecom
Simon Tolson, senior partner, Fenwick Elliott

Will Waller, head of market intelligence, Arcadis

18.15 – 20.00: Networking drinks


We have many sponsorship opportunities available, find out more here

*Due to the nature of the event, unfortunately we cannot allow delegates from law firms to attend


Bloomsbury Hotel
16-22 Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3NN

The Bloomsbury hotel is just a stone’s throw from Theatreland, Soho and Covent Garden and 5 minutes’ walk from Tottenham Court Road Tube Station.