Atkins (company)

Atkins (company)

Infobox Company
company_name = Atkins (WS Atkins plc)
company_type = PLC - A member of FTSE 250
foundation = 1938 by Sir William Atkins
location = Epsom, United Kingdom,
Offices in 25 countries
key_people = Ed Wallis, Chairman
Keith Clarke, Chief Executive
industry = Construction and business services
products = Consultancy services
company_slogan = Plan, design, enable
revenue = £1,313.6 million (2008)
operating_income = £86.7 million (2008)
net_income = £100.0 million (2008)
num_employees = approximately 18,000
homepage = []

Atkins is a professional services firm providing engineering, design, planning, project management and consulting services, based in Epsom, United Kingdom. Formerly known as WS Atkins, it was founded in 1938 by Sir William Atkins. Atkins employs approximately 17,500 staff based in 180 offices in 25 countries. Projects have been undertaken in more than 150 countries. For the year ended 31 March 2008, Atkins generated annual turnover in excess of £1.3 billion.

Atkins is the largest engineering consultancy in the UK,­ the largest multi-disciplinary consultancy in Europe, the largest UK engineering consultancy in the Middle East and the world's eighth largest global design firm.New Civil Engineer Consultants File, 2007] [ [ Engineering News-Record] ] Atkins is also the highest fee earner in the league of UK engineering consultancies for the past nine years. [] ]


The original company, WS Atkins & Partners, was established by the late Sir William Atkins in 1938 with offices in Westminster in London. In its early years the practice specialised in civil and structural engineering design work but expanded rapidly after World War II into specialist services in town planning, engineering sciences, architecture and project management.

In 1996, WS Atkins was admitted to the London Stock Exchange and began trading as WS Atkins plc. Since that time, the group has acquired a number of companies, including Faithful+Gould (a cost and project management consultancy firm), Ventron Technology (a specialist process plant contractor), Lambert Smith Hampton (a major property and commercial agency), McCarthy's Consulting Engineers (a firm operating in the Republic of Ireland), Boward Computer Services (computer consultancy), Hanscomb Inc. (construction consultants), MSL Engineering Limited and MSL Services Corp (oil and gas service engineers), Novaplan AB (a Swedish masterplanning and design practice) and Intelligent Space (a pedestrian movement consultancy).

The project that Atkins is most widely associated is the Burj al Arab, which was completed in 1999. [ [ Architectural Record] ]

The company has been trading under the Atkins name since 2002.

The company experienced a number of financial difficulties in 2002 and the previous Chief Executive, Robin Southwell resigned, along with Finance Director Ric Piper, who was also told his new job at Trinity Mirror was no longer open to him. [ [ Why Trinity Mirror won't pay the Piper] ] Keith Clarke replaced him, joining from Skanska.

In 2003, Atkins mutually agreed with the London Borough of Southwark to terminate the management contract it held for the borough's education department after a series of failures [ [ Union anger as Atkins walks out on £100m classroom contract] ] . Following the termination of this contact, the then new Chief Executive Keith Clarke took steps to ensure the company concentrated on its core design business.

Atkins was also one of the five shareholders in Metronet, the tube maintenance company which failed in 2007. [ [ Metronet woes cost WS Atkins dear] ]

In 2007, Atkins announced the sale of Lambert Smith Hampton in a management buyout. [ [ Electric Business] ]


Highways and Transportation

Atkins is the UK's largest provider of highway and transport solutions. Services include transport planning studies and advice, design and site supervision activities and network management and maintenance. Principal clients include the Highways Agency and local authorities in the UK.

Design and Engineering Solutions

Design and Engineering Solutions is divided into five business sectors, namely Defense Aerospace Communications, Design Solutions, Energy, Water & Environment and Design & Programme Management.

China and the Middle East

In China, Atkins focuses on urban planning and design and architecture services. In the Middle East, Atkins provides services such as highways, rail and oil and gas in the Gulf Co-operation Council countries and beyond. Atkins has global design capability in both the Middle East and India.


Atkins is the largest UK based international rail consultancy and provide rail engineering services predominantly to the UK market. Atkins Rail also operate in Scandinavia and the Far East, specifically in signalling, telecommunications, electrification and planned civils and rolling stock. Atkins also provides specialist services to the rail industry in the areas of property, transport planning, environmental management, human factors and asset management. Atkins are providing design programme management and detailed design services for the Dubai Metro and geotechnical and tunneling services for the Gautrain Link in South Africa. Atkins is undertaking a multidisciplinary design consultancy for the centre west section of Crossrail (Royal Oak to Farringdon) in a joint venture with Arup.

Management and project services

Management and Project Services encompasses a range of activities delivering project, cost and programme management, IT and management consultancy in both the public and private sector. Faithful+Gould is the world's second largest project and cost consultancy operating in the transport property and industry sectors. Management consultants provide management and IT consultancy services including programme and project management, change management, performance improvement, strategy and planning and IT solutions.

Asset management

Atkins provides independent facilities management services to the public and private sectors focusing on niche markets such as the UK Ministry of Defence and private sector clients.

Equity investments

Atkins also holds equity investments in PPP/PFI joint ventures, including TranSys which provides the Oyster card contactless payment system to Transport for London.


Some of the notable past and current Atkins projects are as follows:

*Burj Al Arab Dubai, United Arab Emirates
*Dubai Lighthouse, United Arab Emirates
*Bahrain World Trade Centre, Bahrain
*Jinji Hotel, China
*Tianjin Towers, China
*Songjiang Quarry Hotel, China
*Bay Pointe Cardiff, UK
*Memorial Stadium Bristol, UK
*500 Aztec West (The Hub), UK
*St. Germans Pumping Station, Germany
*Dubai Light Rail Transit,Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Latest Awards

Highlights of Atkins's recent award successes:
*UK's Sunday Times Top 20 Best Big Companies 2008 – Atkins was ranked as the 13th Best Big Company to Work For
*Building Awards - Engineering Consultancy of the Year 2008 [ [ Building Awards 2008] ]
*UK's Sunday Times Top 20 Best Big Companies 2007 – Atkins was ranked as the 12th Best Big Company to Work For
*UK's The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers 2008/09 - Atkins was ranked 69th
*UK's The Times Top 50 Where Women Want to Work 2007

ee also



External links

* [ Atkins website]
* [ Atkins Design Studio website]
* [ Atkins Middle East website]
* [ Atkins Danmark website]
* [ Faithful+Gould website]

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