Specialty Contractors Industry Profile

Report Page Length: 10-12
Last Quarterly Update: 12/18/2017
SIC Codes: 17
NAICS Codes: 238
Chapters Include:
Industry Overview Trends & Challenges Industry Forecast
Quarterly Industry Update Call Prep Questions Website & Media Links
Business Challenges Financial Information Glossary & Acronyms
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Excerpt from Specialty Contractors Industry Profile

Companies in this industry contract to perform construction work in a wide variety of trades, including site preparation, concrete, electrical, HVAC, plumbing, and painting. Major companies include APi Group, Comfort Systems USA, EMCOR, Performance Contracting, and Quanta Services (all based in the US), as well as Bilfinger Berger (Germany) and Chicago Bridge & Iron (the Netherlands).

Global revenue for construction work, including specialty contracting, exceeds $7 trillion per year and is expected to reach $12 billion by 2020, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers. The largest construction markets are the US, China, Japan, Germany, Spain, France, and Italy. Emerging markets such as India and Brazil are experiencing growth as increased urbanization and the growing middle class population influence demand for infrastructure and housing. Most specialty contractors focus on a single local or regional market, but some large companies operate internationally.

The US specialty contracting industry includes about 425,000 establishments (single-location firms and units of multi-location firms) with combined annual revenue of about $700 billion.


Demand is driven by new residential and nonresidential construction activity, as well as corporate profits and local government budgets. The profitability of individual companies depends on accurate project bids and efficient operations. Most specialty contractors earn revenues from fixed price contracts, and companies must estimate total costs for projects. If actual material prices or labor costs differ from the estimates and cannot be recovered through change orders, profitability could ...

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