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Grontmij restructures to boost regional synergies

Grontmij UK chief executive Lawrence Hughes this week emerged as one of the big winners in a major restructuring of the Grontmij group.

The 8000 strong, £700M turnover Dutch owned company has shifted from a structure based on six geographic regions to one focused on three business lines.

Hughes is to head the water and energy stream and has been appointed a group director, joining a slimmed down, five strong, main board.

The board is headed by chief executive officer Sylvo Thijsen and chief financial officer Mel Zuydam, formerly of the Highways Agency. Hughes retains his leadership of the UK and Ireland business, and adds Poland to his repertoire.

Broadening knowledge

The intention is to create a better way of sharing knowledge, experience and clients across country borders. Hughes hopes to leverage Grontmij’s leading role in wind energy on the Continent and its contacts with key clients to pick up work on the UK’s Round 3 offshore wind development programme.

The new transportation and mobility group will be led by Ulf Palmblad who will also be responsible for the Netherlands and Belgium. Planning and design will be headed by Gert Dral who will also lead Denmark and Sweden.

Grontmij Denmark MD Birgit Norgaard is leaving the group.

“In the current economic climate, the organisational change will enable us to better anticipate demand, unlock synergies and leverage this across geographical borders,” said Thijsen.

The company is aiming for 10% to 15% annual revenue growth between 2010 and 2015 and is looking for acquisitions in fast growing markets such as central and eastern Europe. There will also be cost cutting this year, but there are no plans for UK job cuts.

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