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60 second interview - Designs on the future for the mighty Carillion


Shaun Carter was appointed managing director of TPS, the design, consultancy and project management arm of Carillion, in December 2005.

He talks to Joanna Booth What is you r background in the industry?

I trained as a marine scientist and got into the industry through tidal energy, developing privately-financed renewable power projects. From there I moved to PFI, working in the security and transport sectors and finally as programme director for Carillion Health.

What will your new role involve?

I'll be heading up all TPS's activities, which include multidisciplinary engineering and architectural design, the consultancy business, with specialisms in security and building control, property surveying and our client-side project management arm, Schal.

What are your aims?

I want to grow TPS based on the technical excellence we're famed for. I want to see growth in markets where we are currently strong ? aviation, civil engineering, defence and secure architecture, project management and structural engineering. I also aim to move us into sectors where our current skills are applicable ? private sector project management, regeneration, education and transport. We will grow new advisory services dealing with environmental issues, corporate social responsibility, safety and disability discrimination, where legislative change has recently come in. Customers are now looking for consultancy based on active experience, which we have plenty of. This is a challenge for traditional consultants who have only ever advised others what to do. We have done it ourselves.

What headline projects are you currently working on?

We continue to support BAA at Heathrow's Terminal 5 and at Stansted, and we've just finished at Madrid's giant Baracas airport. We are working with Carillion Health on independent sector treatment centres and for our parent company and outside contractors on prison frameworks.

Education is a growing market, and we are involved with City Academies. We have a very significant security consultancy. We are currently in the bidding for the Defence Training Review.

What percentage of work is for your parent company?

Three quarters of our work is external, which gives us stability and exposure. We can bring the benefits of our experience working in-house to other companies. This is particularly valuable for medium-scale contractors as they can employ us to bring the experience garnered on large projects with complex procurement routes.

How has Carillion's acquisition of Mowlem affected TPS?

Mowlem had no direct equivalent of TPS. It is a large inhouse customer, but also ? I believe more importantly ? it gives us access to the clients which come with its projects.

We've already gained consultancy opportunities through this route.