Gerens Hill International was founded in 1998 as an alliance of New Jersey-based Hill International, a global leader in construction management and consulting, and a large number of Spanish Savings Banks. The venture started from humble beginnings, with seven employees on the payroll. “The first five years we were busy recruiting the team and defining the portfolio. In 2003 the time was ripe to commence business on a large scale,” recalls José Manuel Albaladejo, chief executive officer.
Today Gerens Hill International ranks as a global leader in the integrated management of exclusive construction projects. The group employs 2,300 professionals all over the world. Its expertise covers areas as diverse as hotel and leisure, corporate and residential buildings, healthcare and rehabilitation. Gerens Hill consultants and project managers are also involved in major infrastructure projects, such as roads, railways and power generation plants.
The philosophy is to support clients in all project phases – from locating a suitable site, to financing, sponsor search and investor selection, right through to construction (with guaranteed maximum price) and facility management. Currently, the company manages a tramway construction project in Zaragoza, where it will take over the operation in a public-private partnership.
Satisfied customers are a company’s best recommendation, and in this case it is an excellent recommendation indeed. The Gerens Hill reference list includes such renowned names as BBVA, GE, Endesa, Iberdrola and Repsol. The company has performed project work for the World Bank, the Latvian Ministry of Culture, Bombardier, Siemens and Orient Express Hotels.
Asked about the company’s typical target group, Mr. Albaladejo replies, “Anyone who sets store by reliable, honest and independent management of a challenging project. Gerens Hill is one of the few players in the market to guarantee total independence. This avoids conflict of interest and allows us to focus on the client’s interests.”
According to the CEO, Gerens Hill was less affected than others by the financial crisis. “Our fuel tanks were full when we started crossing the desert,” he says alluding to well filled order books. In 2008 the group managed projects worth a total of 200 million EUR. The strategy for the future is to diversify the service portfolio. Plans are underway to establish a new company specialised in the management of projects left behind by insolvent investors.