Shares in housing contractor Mears Group were down 8% at noon, having initially lost 11%, after it warned revenues and profits would be hit as a result of the Grenfell Tower fire. Mears said the fire meant its social housing clients would be making sure properties were safe and compliant with rules, delaying plans for work orders. It said this would cut the revenue it had expected to make this year from housing by £30m, to £800m.Half year profits were flat at £12.7m.
Mears, which provides services in every region in the UK, told the BBC it had had no involvement with the Grenfell Tower, nor, indeed with any properties run by Kensington and Chelsea Council. Nonetheless, it said the “tragic events at Grenfell Tower will impact the housing division later this year as clients review the commissioning and safety practices at their properties”. It said this would inevitably affect the timing of its planned workloads as clients’ attentions were being diverted towards making sure their housing portfolios were safe and fully compliant. David Miles, chief executive, of Mears, said: “Whilst the likely revenue shortfall for the full year is frustrating, it is entirely understandable in the circumstances and the group will be working closely with its partners and clients at this time to address their immediate priorities.”However, Mr Miles added that its order book remained strong and the board also remained confident in its future prospects.Mears employs more than 13,000 people on maintenance and repair of social housing. It also has a smaller care division providing support to older and disabled people who live in their own homes.