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Opus Expands into Canada

26 January 2004

MEDIA RELEASE


Opus Expands into Canada
(For NZ release)

New Zealand based professional services consultancy, Opus International Consultants has expanded into Canada, through the acquisition of Geoplan Consultants Inc.

Geoplan operates from offices in New Brunswick, British Columbia and Ontario. Its work has centred on geomatics, transportation planning, and civil engineering and more recently the company has been providing services in road asset management and pavement management. In the Canadian market it has a track record of delivering cost effective engineering solutions for a number of clients including government departments, local authorities and the private sector. The head office is in Fredericton, New Brunswick.

OPUS Chief Executive, Dr. Kevin Thompson says the merger of the two companies will enable Opus to further expand and increase their presence in this market. “This is a natural progression for us, for while we are already doing extensive work in this market, the establishment of offices in Canada will reinforce our presence with clients and potential clients. Our main focus initially will be to continue in the areas of work established by Geoplan, bringing our own particular expertise and adding value where this is feasible. We both share a common work ethic of delivering a superior service, on time and within budget.”

OPUS already has offices in Australia, the UK and Malaysia, and has successfully operated in these markets particularly in the areas of highway and infrastructure asset management. The company is presently involved with the redevelopment of the London Underground Piccadilly Line, road asset management projects in Western Australia, NSW, Queensland and a number of projects in the developing countries of South-East Asia and the Pacific Islands. Opus also recently joined with Sydney based consultancy Tierney’s to provide services there under the trading name Tierney OPUS.

In 2002 the company was awarded the Trade New Zealand Services Exporter of the Year Award for boosting annual exports from $9.5 million in 1999 to $28.8 million in 2001. Engineering consultancy accounts for approximately 90 percent of OPUS’ export business, with highway asset management a large portion of that.

“The company is capitalising on a growing awareness around the world of the need for highway authorities to sustain the value of their asset through the investment in managed maintenance,” says Dr. Thompson. “We have built a reputation in this area in New Zealand and are now taking this expertise and experience to new markets around the world.”

In New Zealand, OPUS was the lead structural and utility services design-engineering consultancy for the recently opened Britomart Transport Centre and underground station in Auckland. The company has been recognised through a succession of industry awards for innovation, most recently for the design of the Information Services Building at the University of Otago, the Auckland Remand Prison, and the cantilevered section of SH6 through the Arthur’s Pass National Park.

With the merger of Geoplan and OPUS no staff will be affected and the two companies expect to achieve total business integration in the ensuing months. Already the two companies have gained a number of major commissions for road asset management advisory services.

The new company will officially commence trading on 31 January and will operate as Geoplan OPUS in Canada.

ENDS

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