Bachy business development manager Paul Hodgson said that the firm wanted to exploit the slowdown in the geotechnical market by snapping up engineers and skilled operatives from struggling competitors.
He said Bachy could take on between 25 and 50 people. The firm currently employs 430. "We are booming," he said. "We are considering upping our head count. We need 50, but will probably end up taking on nearer 25 as a compromise because everybody is still nervous [about the market]."
Hodgson said Bachy’s success is down to its decision to shift its focus "outside its comfort zone". Bachy is working on a number of high profile infrastructure projects including the M74 completion project in Glasgow, the New Tyne Tunnel in Newcastle and the London Gateway Port.
Bachy is also working on the extension of London’s ExCeL exhibition centre for the London 2012 Olympics, its largest ever marine piling job. It is also bidding for work on Crossrail stations at Isle of Dogs and Tottenham Court Road. "If you don’t look outside your comfort zone you find that your core business is a) under threat from other firms and b) not there anymore," he said.
Bachy’s confidence in the market will come as a tonic to a sector which has seen revenues massively hit by the slowdown in the commercial property and housing market. In the last few months major players including Roger Bullivant have been forced to consider making wholesale redundancies (NCE 16 October).