AN AMERICAN lawyer has been chosen as the anointed heir to Bovis chairman Sir Frank Lampl.
In a clear signal that the 72-year-old Lampl is nearing the end of his prestigious career, Luther Cochrane has been made chief executive of the worldwide Bovis Construction Group.
This is the first time such an appointment has been made since Lampl became chairman in 1985.
The fact that an American has been chosen for the role is being interpreted by many as a sign of the firm's growing internationalisation. However, a spokesman said the Bovis head office would remain in London.
The 50-year-old Cochrane has made a name for himself pulling together Bovis' American operations and expanding into Latin America and Canada. He has increased turnover in the US to pounds1.5bn making Bovis the country's largest construction manager. His marketing expertise last year led to his being named as one of New York's top 100 business leaders.
Cochrane practised construction and real estate law before joining North Carolina-based contractor McDevitt Street in 1985. Cochrane joined Bovis, when McDevitt was bought in 1990. He was made president of Bovis' American arm in 1995.