Chapter One

After successfully listing Transfield Services in May 2001, Transfield Holdings' main active business remained construction. However, a decision was made some 12 months earlier that the construction business required the injection of new capital.

To this end, ABN-Amro were engaged as advisers to source a Joint Venture partner for the whole business. The advice virtually from the outset was that the business needed to improve its profitability and its order book to attract any interested party.

For over a year the company and its consultants looked for a prospective joint venture partner, internationally and locally. At the time, it seemed that the whole sector was flat, as few construction companies were trading well in what was hitherto a risky and litigious environment. The initial hopes of finding a partner to share the risk proved fruitless.

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