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Looking for New Opportunities - 'Development News' Interview

Looking for New Opportunities - 'Development News' Interview

In an interview in 'Development News' Magazine, Con Murphy, PM Group Director with responsibility for the CEE region, introduces the company and explains the main reasons for entering the Czech and Slovak Markets.

Could you briefly introduce PM Group as a company?
Established in Ireland in 1973, today PM Group operates globally with a significant presence in several European countries as well as in the Middle East, Asia and the US.  With a team of 1,700 people PM Group is an employee-owned and managed company.  We provide a wide range of professional services to the commercial, retail, healthcare, education, energy and transportation sectors.  Our blue-chip clients come from the biopharmaceuticals, food, advanced technology and med tech sectors.  We are also one of the premier suppliers of consulting services in a wide range of environmental, sustainability and technical sectors (including EU structural funding).

What are the main services you offer to clients and who are your main target clients?
Our strength lies in our ability to understand and design the customers’ processes as well as their buildings.  So whether it is the development of a complex food manufacturing or pharmaceutical project, operating theatres in a hospital, or a data centre for a bank or computer manufacturing company, we can provide a full service from location search, design works, cost management, procurement to overall project and construction management.  We also provide many specialist services such as master planning, safety management, sustainability and energy efficiency consulting (including certification to recognized standards such as LEED, BREEAM, etc).

What are the most significant projects that PM Group has worked on?
It is important to appreciate that the company has designed and managed several hundred facilities over the past 38 years.  Each of those projects presented its own challenges.  In the early years several large pharmaceutical projects for companies like Pfizer, Merck, and GlaxoSmithKline set landmarks for the company.  In more recent years the Johnson & Johnson Centocor biotechnology project which won a major international sustainability award, the Dell Manufacturing facility in Poland, major hospital projects such as St Barts in the UK, several R&D facilities for European universities including the Jagellonian University in Krakow and confidential data centre projects for major international search engine companies have all been significant projects for PM Group.

Can you tell us what makes PM Group different from other architecture and project management companies?
Our ability to design and deliver complex processes and buildings, whether it is biopharmaceuticals or food manufacturing, or state-of-the-art healthcare and R&D facilities, sets us apart from our competition.  For clients that require such complex facilities, the decision to appoint PM Group is often very clear cut. But this work only constitutes 50% of our design workload.  To design complex facilities, apart from the obvious technical capability, it is necessary to have excellent quality systems which are applied universally to our projects, and superb communication skills which are also engendered in our staff.  Coupled with flexibility, ‘can do’ attitude and our ethos of going the extra mile to ensure customer satisfaction, we provide exactly the same service for less complex projects in the commercial and industrial sectors and these qualities set us apart from our competition.  We take the same approach and have equally well developed systems for our project and construction management services.  We can ensure the successful delivery of major construction projects whether these are gas terminals, power stations or sports stadia – with many such references in our portfolio.  Of course a significant advantage that we have is our ability to provide the full range of project services including engineering design, procurement and construction management with the ability to tap into our wide range of world-class specialists to support projects as required.  An integral part of PM Group is also our architecture firm, Devereux Architects, which has an outstanding reputation for award-winning architecture across Europe, particularly in education, healthcare and lifesciences.

What was your main intention for opening the branches in the Czech and Slovak Republics?
PM Group already operates from a network of 24 offices globally.  The opening of the Czech and Slovak offices is part of PM Group’s expansion plan.  We recently established other operations in Belgium, Sweden, India, Turkey and the US.  We also believe that the Czech and Slovak Republics are countries with strong growth potential and with significant opportunity for PM Group to develop substantial business.  We have a saying in the Irish language that roughly translates ‘faraway fields are greener’.  In our case those fields in the Czech Republic and Slovakia were just over the border from Poland where we have operated successfully for almost 15 years.  In fact those fields are very close as our largest office in the CEE region in Wroclaw, which is only 140 km from the Czech border.  We had been waiting for a good opportunity to enter these markets for several years. That opportunity arose last year with the takeover of a significant Project and Construction Management business in the two countries which has allowed PM Group to hit the ground running locally, building up in particular our commercial and retail project management capability not only in these two countries but in the region generally.

Read the full article (464KB PDF)

For more information, please contact our Czech Republic and Slovakia offices