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Capital Projects

We enable our clients to grow profitably by helping them maximize the value of their capital expenditure investments.

We help our clients improve the return on their CapEx investments in four specific ways:

Generating higher returns and greater predictability

We work closely with owners/developers and contractors to achieve higher lifecycle returns for their large capital projects, in less time and with greater predictability, by moving from traditional activity-focused project and contractor management to a value maximization approach for end-to-end project delivery. We achieve this with expertise and support across the entire project lifecycle in the following key ways.

We ensure the project is fully optimized before construction begins with a sharp view on value and risk by:

  • optimizing the business case and ensuring a strong link to the overall strategy and relevant OpEx considerations
  • identifying the concept that offers the highest value potential
  • establishing and implementing a clear stakeholder strategy early in the process
  • developing the optimal resource strategy
  • optimizing the design for value and execution
  • developing and implementing the best contracting strategy that takes into account both the owner’s organization and capabilities as well as the contractors strengths and weaknesses
  • developing and implementing the best procurement strategy

We prepare for and maintain flawless execution with world class functional expertise by:

  • rigorously managing contractors and vendors
  • implementing lean, accelerated construction practices
  • driving accelerated project commissioning and ramp-up

We ensure all the necessary supporting capabilities are in place by:

  • building a high performing owner’s team
  • implementing value and risk based assurance processes
  • deploying project controls that focus on managing value and risk

Applying analytic rigor across 5 key dimensions

To help companies apply the same analytical rigor to capital projects as they do to mergers and acquisitions, McKinsey has established a new approach to conduct due diligence on major capital projects. At the heart of this due diligence approach is the MIRA, which evaluates five dimensions of a capital project (technical issues, execution requirements, market factors, political and regulatory concerns, and organizational capabilities) against five readiness criteria (degree of project definition, degree of project optimization, quality of risk assessment, maturity of planning for the next stage, and adequacy of resources).

The outcome of this diagnostic is a heatmap that shows our clients exactly which parts of their projects are sufficiently advanced and which require further work. The heatmap ensures that decision making is more transparent and based on accurate facts since it highlights the critical gaps that must be addressed before the project is ready for successful execution.

Helping small- and medium-capital projects improve value

Small and medium sized capital projects of less than ~$100 million can represent 20–40 percent of the total CapEx spend in capital-intensive industries and can represent more than 80 percent of all capital projects, yet they often receive insufficient management attention. We find that better management of this “small CapEx” portfolio with a rigorous value focused approach, stretching from business case and concept development all the way to execution and ramp-up, can translate into 2–4 percent ROIC improvement. Together with a better value maximization approach on large projects this is also a crucial prerequisite for better capital allocation at the corporate level.

Building world class organizations

Our expertise, proprietary tools, and databases that support our work are based on more than 100 capital projects engagements we do each year and a detailed understanding of best practices of the most successful Asian companies.

Additionally, we bring the full weight of our functional and industry expertise to bear on behalf of our clients, including:

  • lean expertise to help our clients implement lean practices at their construction yards
  • procurement expertise to support procurement and negotiation of critical packages and materials
  • manufacturing and supply chain experts to support accelerated commissioning and ramp-up
  • risk practice expertise and experts for all aspects of project risk prioritization and mitigation
  • strategy practice insights on ensure the right link between overall strategy and the proposed project
  • deep industry insights and expertise in such areas as mining, metals. oil & gas, chemicals, power generation, infrastructure, advanced industries

featured experts

Filippo Rossi

Senior Partner, Paris

Olivier Legrand

Senior Partner, Perth

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