Business View Magazine September 2018

150 151 “Most of our projects have a design, build, fi- nance, and maintenance scope for anywhere from 20 to 50 years”, says Budden. “We maintain and lifecycle our projects and invest our own money into them for that period of time. Typically, there is a performance-based contract that requires us to rectify any issues within a set timeframe to avoid penalties. This is at our risk and cost and we work closely with select subcontractors to assume and manage these obligations.” According to Budden, “There are different types of P3 bidders.We are a pure development player, specializing in P3s, and we structure and provide all of the required private financing.We don’t do construction ourselves.We will self-perform operations, maintenance, and lifecycle where it makes sense, particularly in the civil context, but often we’ll also contract these roles out to spe- cialized subcontractors. One of our key differen- tiators from other stand-alone P3 developers is that we’re very active and get intimately involved with the design, construction, maintenance, and operations and lifecycle planning and oversight. This is in contrast to the more passive model we see from many developers under which they provide funding but no real, involved oversight or active interface and instead rely primarily on the contractors to run the project.” The other type of P3 investor that has emerged is construction firms that look to invest into the equity of the projects they construct.While some of these groups will invest for the longer term, many plan to stay involved for a shorter period of time, selling their investment when the project PLENARY GROUP NORTH AMERICA reaches an operational state – something Plenary does not do. “We believe it is import- ant to have full alignment with the infra- structure users throughout the whole project term,” says Budden, “which is why we believe in hands-on oversight.We’re focused on the long-term, and are staffed with 100 people to properly, actively manage these partnerships –we have never exited a project.” Employee turnover isn’t an issue. A thin lay- er of management (one person at the top of each division that reports to Budden) means a very flat organizational structure with many opportunities for people to take on interest- ing and advanced work. Budden credits the positive corporate culture to “a fairly young employee base; one of the smartest collec- tions of 30- to 40-something professionals from across a wide range of disciplines. They like to have fun and share our successes and I think they appreciate that we’re a nimble, flex- ible company that is always looking to innovate and be at the forefront of the industry.” Partnerships are huge for Plenary. Before bidding on a project, time is spent choosing the right partners for construction, operations