Facilities company Mitie, which, of course, includes Mitie Pest Control, reported its annual results on 7 June. Unusually, chief executive officer, Phil Bentley, found himself in the BBC Radio 4 Today programme hot seat. The demise of Carillion was, without doubt, the main reason for the Beeb’s interest.
Mitie’s results were actually much improved in 2017/18. Although still in deficit to the tune of £8 million, that was a much better performance than the previous year (2016/17) where a loss of £40 million was recorded and when the company found itself being investigated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Phil Bentley is the man brought in to sort things out and he was quick to point out that: “Mitie is not a Carillion. Essentially Carillion was brought down by its construction interests and we are not in construction,” he said.
Turnover was up almost 3% to £2.2billion and Mr Bentley said the company was now getting on top of its costs.
The pest control part of the business is lumped in with cleaning and waste management so it is difficult to know how that part of the group is performing. Cleaning and Environmental Services however reported turnover of £405.5m with profits of £19.8m. It is the third most profitable part of the group after Engineering Services (£35.5m) and Security (£25.2m).
Asked about why outsourcing companies are finding it difficult to make moeny he said that facilities management is a tough industry with thin margins. Mitie has been active in explaining to government that contracts should not just be awarded on price. Procurement officers need to consider value as well as price. The Mitie approach is to use technology to add value and that will continue.