Aecon beats expectations as third quarter helped by federal subsidy program

TORONTO — Aecon Group Inc. beat expectations as its net profit surged to $73.6 million in the third quarter as it was helped by the federal wage subsidy program.

The Toronto-based construction firm said it earned 99 cents per diluted share for the three months ended Sept. 30, compared with 60 cents per share or $42.1 million a year earlier.

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Revenues increased about one per cent to $1.04 billion, from $1.02 billion.

Aecon was expected to earn 41 cents per share on $1 billion of revenues, according to financial markets data firm Refinitiv.

The company said it received $69 million from the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, which helps companies maintain employment as they deal with the impact of COVID-19.

Its backlog was about $6.7 billion, up from $6.6 billion in the third quarter of 2019.

"Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Aecon has been well served by the diversity and resilience of its operations," said CEO Jean-Louis Servranckx.

"While we have certainly been impacted by COVID-19, operating conditions have stabilized and Aecon's underlying business performance remains strong."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 29, 2020.

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