Medical construction firm triples turnover responding to Covid-19 challenge


London and Essex based CFES more than tripled its turnover while supporting the healthcare sector in the fight against Covid-19, with help from Lloyds Bank.

The specialist healthcare construction and engineering firm, which delivers complex building and installation projects to both public sector and private healthcare clients, worked with the NHS at the start of the pandemic to deliver additional hospital bed capacity.

With the business receiving a number of substantial orders as part of the national response to the coronavirus outbreak, Lloyds Bank provided a package of support which enabled CFES to mobilise quickly and meet the heightened demand for its services. The package included additional invoice discount facilities and increased credit limits to support cashflow.

As a result of responding to the sudden spike in demand and going on to work on London’s Nightingale hospital, where it helped to create a 4,000-bed intensive care facility over a period of four months, the business’s turnover grew from £11m to £34m for the year ending August 2020.

CFES returned to the Nightingale hospital just before Christmas to remodel its layout into a 300-bed rehabilitation unit.

The company, which employs 18 full-time members of staff, also expanded the number of subcontractors it was using to four times the usual amount, and worked with 250 supply chain partners.

Managing director Rob Doubtfire believes collaboration at such scale and speed of completion has set a new precedent for delivering healthcare projects.

He said: “As a business, we have always looked for ways to develop measures to drive speed and cost savings into NHS projects. How quickly projects like building the Nightingale hospital were completed was previously unheard of and has shown what can be achieved.

“The key for us to collaborative working has been paying our suppliers promptly so we can continue to ask a lot of them, to deliver these projects in a timely fashion. Lloyds Bank has continued to provide the support and banking facilities throughout an extremely demanding period to make this possible.

“Lloyds Bank has remained by our side, making quick decisions for us, dealing with requests within time-pressured deadlines, and supporting us at every stage of the journey.”