Sir Norman Foster in Abu Dhabi. Photographyby Rajesh Raghav/ITPImages
ITP Images
Sir Norman Foster in Abu Dhabi. Photographyby Rajesh Raghav/ITPImages

Foster + Partners sees significant drop in projects across the Middle East

UK's largest architecture practice, Foster + Partners, has seen a fall in turnover, profits and staff, as well as a drop in workload across the Middle East region. 

According to the firm's latest accounts, the firm has been seeing a decline in its figures for the second year in a row, falling from GBP 245 million ($32 million) in 2017 to GBP 13 million ($17 million) by April 2018.

The architecture firm’s annual statement also reveals a reduction in staff numbers from 1,425 employees to 1,266, according to Architectural Journal.

The company has also reported a significant drop in the number of projects in the Middle East (although Foster cites Kuwait International Airport as the firm’s largest project of 2018) and South America, as well as a general decrease in workload in the UK and North America.

On the other hand, regions with reported growth are Australasia, Europe, and Asia.

A spokesperson from Foster + Partners told AJ: “The reduction in turnover for the year to April 2018 has been due to the effect of several very large projects completing together and the impact of the reduction in the quantum of pass-through expenses (sub-consultants) – which are included in turnover.”

The spokesperson also added that the firm’s “current order book us at near-record levels.”

As a note in the company’s group account, architect and founder, Norman Foster said: “[As well as Bloomberg and Apple] 2018 also marked the completion of 12 other projects and the ground-breaking for three new buildings. The largest being Kuwait International Airport and the smallest being the tiny chapel for the Vatican in Venice for this year’s Architecture Biennale.”