Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Scotia Homes ready for growth after challenging first year under new owners

Scotia Homes' Knockhall site in Newburgh. L-R Martin Bruce ( managing director)  Gary Gerard  ( chairman ) and Graham Reid ( land and development director).
Scotia Homes' Knockhall site in Newburgh. L-R Martin Bruce ( managing director) Gary Gerard ( chairman ) and Graham Reid ( land and development director).

North-east housebuilder Scotia Homes is planning further expansion into markets in the Highlands and on Tayside amid continued signs of homeowners wanting a post-lockdown move.

Managing director Martin Bruce said the Ellon-based firm already had a substantial landbank but was also on the hunt for more sites to meet an anticipated jump in demand for country living.

We have seen strong recovery in sales volumes and prices at our developments in the Highlands and Tayside.”

Martin Bruce, managing director, Scotia Homes

In addition, the company has announced the appointment of a land and development director, Graham Reid, previously Aberdeen-based regional development director with Savills, to play a leading role in driving future growth.

A qualified chartered surveyor, Mr Reid has enjoyed a varied career encompassing commercial surveying/valuation, banking and housebuilding prior to joining Savills to help establish its Aberdeen office in 2015.

He is now responsible for Scotia’s land acquisition strategy, as well as its affordable housing delivery, product development and new home designs.

Scotia Homes land and development director Graham Reid

Mr Reid said: “Whilst the economic conditions remain challenging, Scotia has weathered the storm extremely well and is one of the strongest privately-owned housebuilders in Scotland.”

Scotia chairman Gary Gerrard said the “wealth of experience” of the new addition to Scotia’s boardroom team would be “invaluable to the business as we continue our growth strategy”.

The firm aims to double its annual new home completions to 350 over the next three years, fueled by recent acquisitions of development sites in the Cairngorm National Park and Perthshire/Angus areas.

Scotia has weathered the storm extremely well and is one of the strongest privately-owned housebuilders in Scotland.”

Graham Reid, land and development director, Scotia Homes

Scotia has current and future developments in Aberdeen, Arbroath, Aviemore, Blairgowrie, Brechin, Ellon, Forfar, Inverkeilor, Inverness, Kingussie, Kintore, Nairn, Newburgh, Oldmeldrum, and Perth.

Accounts just lodged at Companies House reveal the impact of Covid-19 on the business during the 14 months to June 30 2020, with the firm having changed its year-end to match that of it’s parent.

Pre-tax losses came in at £13.1 million, compared with profits of more than £3.5m in the previous 12 months. Turnover for the latest period totalled around £37m, against £35.4m in the 2018-19 trading year, but was down by 10% on an annualised basis.

‘Substantial headroom’

Results were also impacted by a £13.6m write-down on the value of Scotia’s landbank and work-in-progress, against a backdrop of the pandemic and a collapse in oil prices.

Scotia was forced to put nearly all its workforce on furlough and make 29 people redundant last year, but headcount is now back up to the pre-pandemic level of about 190.

Mr Gerrard said the firm’s balance sheet was strong, with net assets of £17.2m, bank debt of £5.74m, at year-end, as well as “substantial headroom” available to support growth.

Covid-19 ‘hugely affected’ 2019-20 trading performance

Mr Bruce, who founded Scotia in 1990, together with his late father, Bill Bruce, said: “The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has been unprecedented; the UK-wide lockdown in the spring of 2020 saw our whole business closed for almost three months and this hugely affected our trading performance for the period ended June 30 2020.

“Since our financial year-end, our sales performance has been much improved as lockdown has encouraged customers to prioritise moving home, placing increased importance on outdoor space and additional rooms for homeworking.”

Scotia aims to tap into people’s demand for more outdoor space.

Scotia’s MD added: “The Aberdeen and north-east market has shown some signs of stabilisation as prices have fallen to more sustainable and affordable levels. We have seen strong recovery in sales volumes and prices at our developments in the Highlands and Tayside.”

New home completions increased slightly in the latest period to 182 units, from 169 in the previous year, reflecting higher activity levels seen during the second half of 2019.


Jim Hunter: Government inaction on Highlands and Islands housing crisis is failing younger generations


Scotia – previously controlled by the Bruce family – is now owned by Camlin Group, a joint venture of property entrepreneurs Bruce Linton and David Cameron, who acquired the business last year for an undisclosed sum. The size of Camlin’s majority stake was also undisclosed.

Mr Linton is the businessman behind Dundee-based James Keiller Holdings. Mr Cameron has other property interests and is a director of Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC.

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]