Top 10 firms profiting from Iraq

Published: 13 March 2006

1. AMEC 500m

It is a global project management company specialising in the oil and gas and engineering sectors. In Iraq, it is or has been: subcontractor on the $154m (89m) Fluor contract to restore electrical power systems (February 2004); a joint contract with Fluor to "provide design-build services for construction, rehabilitation, operation, and maintenance of power generation facilities" worth $500m from Usaid (March 2004); a joint contract with Fluor to "provide design-build construction services for water resource projects" worth $500m and $600m from Usaid (March 2004); an unknown sum from a Centcom contract.

2. Aegis 246.5m+

It is perhaps the biggest UK success story in Iraq, having won the $430m Pentagon contract to oversee all private security operations. Yet Aegis has been rejected once for membership of the International Peace Operations Association, a trade association that prefers to style its sector the "peace and stability industry".

3. Erinys 86m+

Based in London, Erinys specialises in security for the petroleum, construction and mining industries. In Iraq, it has been responsible for the creation of an oil protection force. Between August 2003 and December 2004, Erinys Iraq trained, equipped and mobilised a 16,000-strong Iraqi guard force to protect the pipelines.

4. Petrel Resources (Anglo-Irish) 56.6m

It is a London and Dublin listed oil and gas exploration company, with current operations focused on Iraq where it is seeking licences to run three existing oil wells.

5. HSBC 36.88m

HSBC is the third biggest financial institution in the world. Has bought 70 per cent of a recently established Iraqi bank, Dar es Salaam Investment Bank, which has assets of $91.1m. HSBC's share is therefore 36,881,225. Its profit from Middle East business rose 25 per cent in 2004.

6. Cummins UK 25.8m+

The world's largest manufacturer of diesel engines has been awarded contracts worth $45m from sales to power stations in Iraq.

7. PB Power 24.88m

The global engineering and construction firm won a $43.4m contract to provide programme management office support for the electrical services sector.

8. Control Risks 23.5m+

The risk consultancy business helps companies with everything from capital raising to crisis management. It provides governmental and corporate clients with security management, discreet armed protection, and information support. Its contracts included: an unknown proportion of $500m; subcontractor for Parsons Usaid buildings contract (March 2004); 23.5m from UK Government for protection squads; figure disputed by CR (March 2004). More than 250 personnel in Iraq (June 2005).

9. MerchantBridge 22.07m

It is is an investment banking group focusing on telecommunications, real estate, construction, financial services, information technology and hotels in Iraq. "Lead adviser" to Iraq's Ministry of Industry and Minerals for factory lease programme (January 2004); launched Mansour Bank (September 2005), capitalised at $38.5m; 90 per cent from Iraqi investors.

10. Global Risk Strategies 15.4m (at least)

Risk management company, which advises on all aspects of corporate security, including counter-terrorism strategies. It has its headquarters in Hampton, Middlesex. It assists with humanitarian aid and reconstruction projects in the aviation, oil, banking and infrastructure sectors. Has 2,000 staff in Iraq. Received $27m contract to distribute new dinar (May 2004); guarded part of Baghdad airport (May 2004).

The high-profile players


Former Scots Guards, former SAS, Spicer is chief executive of Aegis, a private security firm. He founded Sandline, along with Simon Mann (who is now jailed for plotting a coup in Equatorial Guinea)


The former Defence minister (from 1994-97), is a non-executive director of Aegis


Former SAS, former head of British special forces 1989-1993. Previously linked to the consultancy group Control Risks, Phipps is now the head of Aegis operations in Iraq


The Tory former defence secretary is a non-executive director and chairman of Armor Group, which has been awarded 11.4m of public contracts in Iraq


Friend of Prince Charles and brother of Prince William's nanny. Former aide-de-camp to chief of defence staff. Operations chief for Olive Security - turnover almost doubled in 2004.


Commander of the 22nd SAS regiment, 1979-82. Commandant of school of infantry, of staff college, Camberley, and first Director special forces, 1988-89; non-executive director of Control Risks Group


His firm Bell-Pottinger was awarded a 3m by the British Government to promote democracy in the run-up to the 2004 elections. His company is closely involved in campaign to promote concepts such as return of sovereignty


One of Britain's foremost diplomats, he is a non-executive director of De la Rue, a financial services company which has won one of the biggest contracts in Iraq for printing the new Iraqi dinar


Former minister of state, appointed a non-executive director of the Mott MacDonald Group in 2005. The engineering consultancy was given a 1.2m contract from DfID for infrastructure work in Iraq.


Former secretary general of Nato and former Labour defence secretary, is a non-executive director of Weir, the engineering company, which was involved in contract doing oil assessments. Has been in Iraq since May 2003

The other UK interests in Iraq

Adam Smith International, Consultants, 4,1m; AD Consultancy,security; Aggreko, power supply; AKE Group, security; Alstom, power; Armor Group, security, 11.4m; Baker Wilkins, construction; Bell-Pottinger, consultants, 3m; Birks Sinclair & Associates, "socio-economic development"; B-Plan Information Systems, computers, 4.5m; BP Global, petroleum, 2.8m; British Council, teaching, 3.1m; Chiltern Broadcast Management, media, 1.3m; Conren, materials, 20,000; Costain, construction, 15m; Crown Agents for Overseas Government, procurement, consultants, 8m; Datasat, telecomms; De La Rue, financial; DfID: anonymous contractors, 1,1m; Dynamic Processing Solutions, petroleum

12m+ (approx); Eaton Electric Europe, power; Enterplan Ltd, consultants, 4.5m; Eris, consultants, 61,012 ; European Land Solutions, security, Exploration Consultants, petroleum; Foster Wheeler UK, construction, power, 4.87m; Halcrow, construction, 6.8m; Hart Group, security; Hedra Consortium, consultants, 245,540; HTS Development (now HTSPE), consultants; Inclarity Plcc telecomms, most of its 18m revenue from Iraq; Janusian, security; Kroll Associates, security; Llewelyn Davies Yeang, architects, unknown proportion of 1.6m development; Maxwell Stamp consultants, 3.2m; Minimum Risk, security; Mott MacDonald, power and water, 1.2m; Mowlem, construction, 3m; Olive Security, security; PA Consulting Group, consultants 427,548; Powertecnique, power; Schneider Electric UK, power; Scott Wilson, engineering, unknown share of a $160m contract; Serco, services, 7.5m; Shell (Anglo-Dutch) petroleum; Siemens, power; Solace Enterprises, consulting; Standard Chartered, financial services; TQ Education & Training, education, 5.73m; United Mesopotamia, security; Weir, petroleum