Lend Lease homes in on US

Lend Lease has identified the US as the region to provide significant future growth and has cemented the next development phase with the appointment of senior director Denis Hickey, pictured, as chief operating officer, Americas.

Lend Lease has identified the US as the region to provide significant future growth and has cemented the next development phase with the appointment of senior director Denis Hickey, pictured, as chief operating officer, Americas.

In the US, Lend Lease operates under its infrastructure, development and construction banners, all of which have secured new contracts and reported a turnaround in earnings in the past 12-18 months.

The chief executive, property, Australia, at Lend Lease, Tarun Gupta, confirmed Mr Hickey's appointment. He will report to Bob McNamara, CEO, Americas, and will work to further activate the group's integrated model in that region. In particular, Mr Hickey and Mr McNamara will work to identify development investment opportunities and third party capital sources.

"Since joining Lend Lease, Denis has been instrumental in repositioning the Australian development business, driving operational efficiencies and securing major project wins - including Sydney International Convention Exhibition and Entertainment Precinct," Mr Gupta said.

"We have a very strong management team in place and the business is well positioned to go from strength to strength. It will be business as usual until Denis relocates in January 2014."

He said Lend Lease would make an announcement regarding the leadership of the development business before Mr Hickey moved. In his new role, Mr Hickey will also focus on driving "co-capital partnerships" such as the one the group has done in Australia with joint venture partners to develop the $6 billion Barangaroo South project.

For the year to June 30, Lend Lease's US operations reported growth in several urban markets, such as New York City, Chicago, Boston, Washington DC and San Francisco.

In the construction business, profit before tax rose 13 per cent to $47.4 million, despite restructuring costs being incurred.

The development business in the Americas narrowed pre-tax losses from $8.7 million last year to $6 million this year, helped by the $100 million Winston-Salem Veterans Affairs Healthcare Centre project.

Profit before tax for the infrastructure unit also rose after its Actus group reached financial close on the Privatised Army Lodging (PAL) Group C project.

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