A contract win to build a new hospital on the Sunshine Coast last year has helped construction giant Lend Lease take home top spot in a ranking of the top 100 non-residential construction companies in Australia as measured by the dollar value of projects won during the past financial year.

Lend Lease Project Management and Construction (Australia) Pty Ltd has earned the top ranking in the Housing Industry Association-Cordell Construction 100 for 2012/13, bagging around $2.4 billion worth of contracts over the financial year.

Around 80 per cent of these projects were in the community sector and the largest was a $2 billion agreement awarded last July to a consortium with which the company is involved for the construction of the 738-bed Sunshine Coast University Hospital.

Coming in second place, meanwhile, was Hansen Yuncken, which secured $2.2 billion worth of projects, followed by BMD Constructions and Laing O’Rourke Australia. Leighton subsidiary Thiess rounded out the top five.

Overall, the nation’s top commercial and engineering builders bagged contracts worth $35.8 billion over the course of the financial year, accounting for just over one quarter (26 per cent) of the value of non-residential construction work commenced.

Commenting on the report, Housing Industry Association chief economist Harley Dale says a combination of extremely strong mining-related activity and a healthy recovery in apartment building drove what the Australian Bureau of Statistics said was a 12.7 per cent rise in the value of non-residential construction work done in the 12 months to March this year.

He cautions, however, that the commercial sector remains subdued following the winding down of public sector stimulus measures and warns that concerns remain about whether any recovery in non-mining sectors of non-residential construction will be sufficient to pick up the slack as resource investment winds back.

“At present, the pipeline of non-residential construction work in Australia provides a relatively healthy outlook for the short to medium term,” Dale said. “However, some aspects are cause for concern. Namely, the imbalance between the scale of contraction in mining-related construction work likely to emerge from 2013/14 and the lack of evidence that a broad based recovery across other sectors of the non-residential construction industry is on the horizon.”

top ten non residential builders

The latest result for Lend Lease’s subsidiary caps off what was a generally positive 12 months for the broader Lend Lease Group.

Despite weak building conditions in Australia, the UK and some of its Asian markets, the Group posted a respectable 10 per cent rise in earnings in 2012/13 amid stronger earnings in property development and infrastructure development.

The company also recently finalised a consolidation of its Abigroup, Baulderstone, Infrastructure Services and Project Management and Construction businesses into a single unit operating under the Lend Lease brand, a move the Group says will drive greater efficiency and enhance its ability to leverage its strength and expertise across its operations.

The release of the Construction 100 follows the earlier release this week of the HIA-COLORBOND® steel Housing 100 report which ranked Perth-based BCG Australia as the top residential builder in the country by volume of housing starts.