James Wates, a fourth-gen member of the family that controls the eponymous construction business, has been appointed chairman as the family reasserts its control of the company.
Wates (pictured, second from left) replaces non-family Paul Drechsler, who will remain as chief executive, until a replacement can be found for this position as well.
Drechsler had been at the helm for the past seven years in the role of both chairman and chief executive, but Wates had always planned a return to family leadership.
Wates, 53, has 30-years' experience in the 116-year-old family business, serving most recently as deputy chairman alongside Drechsler. Wates Group had revenues of £1.2 billion (€1.4 billion) in 2012, up from £1.1 billion in 2011.
Following the change, the Wates management will be restructured. "There will no longer be a deputy chairman position as this role was created at the time of [Drechsler's] appointment as joint chairman and chief executive,” a spokesman for Wates told CampdenFB.
"As these roles will once again be split, with a family member as chairman, the role of deputy chairman is no longer necessary."
Wates confirmed it was currently looking for a cheif executive to replace Drechsler, and said an announcement will be made soon.