Zaha Hadid’s practice has seen a huge 26 per cent increase in revenue and has added an extra 64 staff, according to its latest company accounts
Figures published by Zaha Hadid Holdings for the year to 30 April 2014 show a massive £10.6 million hike in turnover from £36.9 million to £47.57 million – most of the growth driven by a burgeoning workload in the Middle East.
The company saw its revenue in the region shoot up from £9.3 million in 2013 to £19.14 million in 2014, while Central America became a major new revenue stream with annual turnover rising from £234,000 to nearly £2.5 million.
Overall profit after tax rose by more than 50 per cent – from £3 million to £4.6 million – and the workforce grew from 354 to 418 over the same 12 months.
However, there were the significant dips in work in the UK, with income dropping from £1.5 million to £983,000, and in Europe, where turnover more than halved – falling from £8.6 million to £4.2 million.
Christian Gibbon, general manager at Zaha Hadid Architects, told the AJ: ‘Things are looking very bright for us. Clearly we would like to do more work in the UK and we have been a little unfortunate that very little has come our way [here].
‘However there are large schemes, which are currently confidential, in the UK pipeline.’
Despite the amount of work in the Middle East, including the Riyadh Metro in Saudi Arabia and the new Central Bank of Iraq, the practice did not plan to open a satellite office there.
Gibbon added: ‘All our work in the region is served out of the UK - mainly due to agreements with our clients. But if we were looking at any new office, the Middle East would be the obvious location. Perhaps one more project could tip the scale, then we’d consider putting people locally.’
The Americas also looks like being a fruitful region for the AJ100 practice with four ongoing schemes in Miami alone.
‘There is an appetite for our kind of design in the US – the country came out of the recession quicker than the UK and there are a lot of cash-rich developers who have long-term plans. But Europe is much more cautious,’ said Gibbon.
He admitted that the practice would like to do more social projects and had one small-scale, confidential scheme on its books.
Gibbon said: ‘We’d definitely collaborate with a specialist social design provider. That could be interesting, but that occasion hasn’t arisen quite yet.
‘We already collaborate with specialists, such as Pascall + Watson, which is world-renowned for its work on airports. We are in the running for more airports around the world.’