McAlpine continuing layoffs

McAlpine Ltd, one of the most storied construction companies in the Cayman Islands, will likely see its workforce trimmed to about one-sixth of its peak by early next year because of a lack of 
construction work. 

Ian Pairaudeau, the managing director of McAlpine’s Cayman operations, said the company has already made significant numbers of layoffs and that they would continue 
into the new year. 

“We have decreased our work force by 90 over the last few months and we expect further reductions between now and Christmas,” 
he said. 

The company is putting the finishing touches on a major project, the Willow House building at Cricket Square.  

However, Mr. Pairaudeau said McAlpine, which was established in Cayman in 1971, was not closing its operations here, only downsizing its workforce until it gets more work. He said the Cayman office was its regional Caribbean head office. 

“McAlpine has significant real estate investments in Cayman and there are no plans for the company to relocate or close down its Caribbean operations,” he said. “We will continue to pursue work 
locally. We have traditionally been able to compete with all local and overseas companies for work in Cayman.”  

Mr. Pairaudeau said that in the time McAlpine has been in Cayman, it had gone through 
many slow periods. 

“But that’s expected in construction, as our industry is cyclical.” 

In the meantime, McAlpine is constructing a large hospital in Bermuda and is about to bid on an airport and runway expansion project worth more than $100 million in the British Virgin Islands. 

At its peak, McAlpine had 180 employees in Cayman, with 60 on work permits, Mr. Pairaudeau said, noting that the company was down to about 85 employees. Because he was travelling to the British Virgin Islands at the time he was contacted, Mr. Pairaudeau said he couldn’t give an exact breakdown of the Caymanians and expatriates still employed with 
the company.  

He said the size of the remaining workforce after the layoffs would depend on the work the company had, but that he anticipated the number of remaining employees to 
between 20 and 30. 


  1. Expect this trend to continue, as this Government demonstrates a lack of investment strategy.

    Time is running out for initiatives to rescue a flawed course.

  2. OK, I know its not as simple as that. But we have workers already here on the island, ready to go — and the government is talking to CHINA to bring in workers? What’s wrong with this picture???

  3. Not understanding the state of the construction market, the Government will probably still issue countless of construction licenses to anyone that applies. A lot of small one man outfits will be on the road to cut prices and perform unprofessional jobs.

  4. Sad times for McAlpine ,times are hard for everyone home and abroad,what chance do companies stand when the idiots that call themselves The Government hand out contracts that should be given to the companies in Cayman and keep those people in work.I think its time the corrupt Cayman Government was hung out to dry and bring in those who do genuinely care for the islands and its folks .
    Wishing McAlpine only good things for the future,hope things pick up soon .

  5. Think of the trillions of dollars the central banks have frittered away and STILL deflation creeps in. Soon we will see deflation cripple the entire world economy. McAlpine and the Ritz are just local examples. Real estate values, look out below!!!!!

  6. If the government regulated the building companies better, then the good guys like McAlpine did not have to cut staff.
    Regulate the Cowboys and get them off the islands. I had the unfortunate pleasure of dealing with one of the cowboys, which made such a mess of my house that we are still struggling to fix it up.

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