Suitors circle collapsed builder's carcass

Whether they are vultures or white knights, several overseas companies are reportedly eyeing up the Mainzeal operations.

But whoever acquires Mainzeal’s 40 stalled projects has the luxury of driving a hard bargain.

Inevitably, some of the company’s staff and sub-contractors are going to lose out in the short term.

Ceres NZ has revealed it is in the running for Mainzeal or its assets. It is the local subsidiary of an international, diversified investment and construction company.

Mainzeal’s collapse is a heaven-sent opportunity for the company in the face of Fletcher-dominated and tightly held contracts in Christchurch where Ceres has been involved in demolition work.

A dearth of commercial property work – as revealed in muted building consents – exacerbates market constraints in Auckland and Christchurch.

However, a Ceres application to acquire Mainzeal is likely to be viewed positively by the Overseas Investment Office and its minister.


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The worst thing here is that the Palmerston North office always made a profit and had great staff but now will probably be lost to this region, unless someone comes in and takes it over. There is a lot of work coming up here and not a lot of competition from the main players.

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What's even worse is that the Chch office was booming, with projected turnover for the coming year of $100m and a good profit.

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