Four senior executives of contractor Tutor-Perini Corp. (TPC), who left the firm's ailing Las Vegas-based building group late last month, have launched their own design-build firm there, which their former employer says won't compete. Caspers Construction Co. LLC, to be led by former Executive Vice President and building group CEO Mark Caspers, will have a Portland, Ore., equity firm as a key partner.

Caspers, also CEO of the new firm, says it will specialize in acquiring and repositioning distressed properties. He had been chief of the TPC building unit since 2009 and with the former Perini Building Group since 1982. Named president of Caspers Construction is Pat Hubbs, former group senior executive vice president. Former Vice President of Operations Joe Miller and General Counsel Scott Ryan join Caspers as vice presidents. "Our goal is to generate $400 million in revenue in the first 12 months," says Hubbs. "We will look at mostly private negotiated work in residential, hotel, office and retail markets, and data centers. We will be 100% turnkey." The firm aims to expand to Chicago and Miami by next spring, targeting $40-million to $150-million projects. It anticipates 10% to 15% annual growth in the next five years.

A TPC spokesman says the parting is amicable. CEO Ronald N. Tutor says the positions will not be replaced. "With our building business being down, existing staff will absorb those duties," he told ENR. "Call it a reduction of overhead." In May, BMO Capital Markets construction-sector analyst Avram Fisher said, "We have raised our backlog and bookings forecast [for TPC] on account of the pending Hudson Yards project in the building segment." However, he also lowered forecasts for company margins and for its rate of backlog execution.