Palace of Westminster refurb architect says 2016 pre-tax profits jumped more than 70%

BDP says it wants to open more offices overseas after being bought last year for £102 million by Japanese engineer Nippon Koei.

The architect, which yesterday beat Foster’s, Allies and Morrison and HOK to win the prestigious contract to overhaul the Palace of Westminster, has six offices abroad including outposts in India, China and Abu Dhabi.

But in a statement accompanying its latest report and accounts, the firm said it wanted to “establish more BDP studios outside the UK. Our ambition is not only to increase the volume of work we deliver in the UK market but to increase the overall proportion of work we do internationally.”

The practice said it was looking for more work in the transportation and infrastructure sectors and added: “We will also look to establish a strong foothold in the burgeoning Asian commercial markets combining our strength in the commercial sector with Nippon Koei’s extensive geographic spread across south-east Asia.”

It has six offices in the UK and said it was looking to carry out more work here in education, health, retail and office design, adding: “We have a particular ambition to expand our engineering offer across all of the key UK market sectors.”

Earlier this year, plans by BDP for a £400 million redevelopment of a British Land shopping centre (pictured) in Kingston, south-west London, were given the green light.

The firm, which is also working as executive architect on the new Google headquarters building at King’s Cross in London, carries out 78% of its work in the UK – £64.5 million – while its business outside Europe is just over 12% of revenue.

In the year to 31 December 2016, turnover stayed flat at £82.5 million but the firm, which employs just over 900 people, saw pre-tax profits jump from £4.9 million to £8.5 million.

BDP’s work at the Palace of Westminster will see it provide architectural and building design services alongside consultant CH2M which has been confirmed as the winner of the programme, project and cost management services job.

Last November, BDP won the lead design role on the £500m revamp of MPs’ offices in Westminster, known as the Northern Estate Programme. This will see a number of buildings revamped while £4bn restoration works on the Palace of Westminster take place.