Carillion is one of the UK’s largest construction companies but it is also a provider of many services that help the country function.
Its collapse through an application for compulsory liquidation means the company will eventually be dissolved, with creditors sharing any money from the sale of its assets.
The decision to effectively declare itself bust leaves 43,000 jobs worldwide hanging in the balance though there is some hope that many in the sprawling business will keep their jobs, albeit through Carillion’s work being transferred.
The Government has committed to funding contracts, for the moment at least, and has asked all staff to turn up for work as normal.
Carillion was created in 1999 by the famous road surfacing business Tarmac in a demerger.
Image: Carillion built GCHQ’s ‘doughnut’ in Cheltenham
It expanded its interests – buying a string of companies including Mowlem in 2006 and Alfred McAlpine two years later.
The Wolverhampton-based company described itself as an “integrated support business” with its main focus being on construction and support services work in the UK, Canada and the Middle East.
Almost half its workers – 19,500 people – are in the UK, clean 245 school buildings and
Construction was at the heart of the business.
Its major projects have included “the doughnut” – the iconic circular office building of the UK’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) – completed in 2003.
Alongside new facilities for the Royal Opera House, Carillion completed the Tate Modern in London in 2000.
Image: The company also built the Tate Modern
Its other projects have included the Grand Mosque in Oman, completed in 2001, as well as an expansion to Liverpool FC’s Anfield stadium in 2016.
It had almost completed work on the Midland Metropolitan Hospital in Sandwell – a 670-bed super hospital – with the Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals’ NHS Trust saying on Monday it was working with the Government on putting “alternative arrangements” in place.
The knock-on effect was also being felt by some rivals with Balfour Beatty saying it faced costs of up to £45m arising from its joint ventures with Carillion.
Carillion holds various public sector contracts – even providing dinners.
It is supposed to provide 32,000 meals to primary and secondary schools every day in the UK.
The company has been responsible for cleaning 245 schools and provides maintenance to hundreds more.
Carillion is the second-largest supplier to Network Rail.
Its work includes track, signalling and building projects – recently completing a scheme in Edinburgh over the festive season.
We’ve delivered another successful project at the #Edinburgh Waverley Station.We installed the 150A and 150B modular crossover panels between platforms 10 & 11 during a 54-hour Christmas possession & 29-hour New Year possession. pic.twitter.com/mtApxGfcmc
— Carillion plc (@Carillionplc) January 2, 2018
Carillion was also among winning bidders for key tunnel and track work on the HS2 rail project.
One of its partners in the £1.4bn deal, Kier Group, said on Monday that it was working to achieve continuity of service on not just HS2 but also on their shared Highways England smart motorway programme.
The Government has also said it is expecting the joint ventures to be fulfilled by existing contractors.
:: Prisons and Defence
Carillion maintains approximately half of the UK’s prisons as well as roughly 50,000 homes for the Ministry of Defence.
It is understood that 10-15 NHS hospital Trusts have direct or sub-contracted arrangements with Carillion in areas such as cleaning and maintenance.
An NHS Improvement spokesperson said: “Our top priority is to keep services running safely for patients.
“We, alongside the trusts and the private service providers, have planned extensively for this scenario and will aim to keep any disruption to a minimum.
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“We’re also well aware of the concerns staff will have at this point and we thank them for their continued hard work.
“We will be talking to them via their line management teams as soon as possible.”