Sunday, July 5, 2009

Rok extends payment terms to 60 days

Rok is the latest contractor to extend its standard payment terms from 30 to 60 days for new contracts with sub-contractors and consultants.

It joins Carillion, which also takes 60 days to pay.

The Forum of Private Businesses (FPB) published details of a letter sent to subcontractors and consultants on 22 June, informing them of the change “which if not refuted in writing within seven days of its receipt will be deemed effected.” a
Rok confirmed that it had changed its standard terms to 60 days for all new agreements but claimed that the letter had been sent out in error and was not part of the "usual Rok language" and did not reflect the "true situation".

One FPB member, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “The company has said that these new terms and conditions will apply unless there are objections to them, but, in reality, how can you stand up to a business of Rok’s size? There’s no doubt that many smaller sub-contractors and their suppliers will struggle as a result of this move, but speaking out will simply result in Rok refusing to work with them again. It’s a no-win situation.”


Rok extends payment terms to 60 days


Nick Palin, the FPB’s director of finance and administration said: "Small businesses are bearing the brunt of the slump in the construction sector. It is not reasonable for big businesses to pass on costs incurred via changes to payment terms and conditions further down the supply chain.
"In the current economic climate, this behaviour can force small firms to cease trading altogether. The FPB is campaigning to change the culture of poor payment in the UK and is urging to Rok plc to sign up to the Prompt Payment Code."

If you know of any other contractors or clients which have recently extended the time it takes them to pay, email: