AHR’s UK architect headcount has returned to three figures, pushing the practice back up to 16th in the AJ100 after a marginal slide last year.
Total architectural fees have risen from £20.4 million to £21.3 million, including a rise in fees delivered out of its UK offices from £17.9 million to £19 million. The practice expects to announce a rise in pretax profits for 2018 when it posts its figures later this year, along with a growth in revenue, according to managing director for architecture Martin Wright.
‘We have had a good look at what we are bidding on and how efficient our offices are and we’ve cut out loss-making areas to become more focused and more profitable,’ he explains.
Key wins in 2018 have included the £60 million Chester Northgate regeneration project as well as the office-led mixed-use King’s Square scheme in Gloucester. The practice completed construction of new council offices for Conwy County Borough Council in Colwyn Bay.
AHR’s overseas architect numbers dropped from 46 in 2017 to just 16 – largely accounted for by a management buyout of its Kazakhstan office. Studios in Warsaw and Moscow remain.
The practice is already working across Europe, the Middle East and the Far East, and actively seeking work in North and South America as well as Australasia.
‘We will look where we have the specialism and experience to work in new places,’ says Wright. ‘We are looking to stretch our expertise into more areas to cope with variations in the economy.’
The practice – which has eight UK studios – is also considering growing its high-performing Bristol branch.
‘We had a good year of consolidation in 2018,’ says Wright. ‘We are getting exciting opportunities despite the market. Maybe that is down to our multi-sector, multi-location strategy.’