Exclusive: Willmott Dixon has appointed Charlie Scherer as its new chief operating officer for housing, eight years after he left the firm for Rok.
Mr Scherer will become the housing chief operating officer, after leaving his post as Willmott Dixon’s commercial director in 2004 to become national housing director at Rok. He subsequently became regional director for Leadbitter.
Willmott Dixon has also promoted Mike Hart from his role as director at Willmott Dixon Capital Works to chief operating officer at Willmott Dixon Interiors, the company’s fit-out and refurbishment specialist.
The contractor builds an average of 1,500 new homes a year for a mix of local authorities, registered providers, retirement homes and private developer clients, including its in-house private developer Regen.
The company’s housebuilding activity is mostly in the South-east and Midlands, including several long-term estate regenerations, and it is targeting growth in other parts of the country.
The firm is behind some notable projects such as the UK’s largest Passivhaus residential scheme in Camden, and Bridport House in Hackney, the tallest multi-storey residential building to feature cross-laminated timber as its main structural component.
Willmott Dixon is also intending to grow its workload for Regen, for which it is building 181 homes in Greenwich.
Mr Hart will lead Willmott Dixon’s targeted growth ambitions in the interiors market, where it is active across several sectors including commercial offices, education, hotel and retail.
Both chief operating officers will report to Willmott Dixon Capital Works divisional chief executive John Frankiewicz, who said: “Creating COOs for both our housing and interiors companies reinforces our structure with specialist leadership to complement our focus on winning work, excellence of operational delivery and customer satisfaction.
“We know that getting these things right will drive our success.
“We want to emerge from these tough trading conditions as a stronger, more efficient business that has successfully stayed ahead of the curve, been capable of spotting trends and of maximising market opportunities as they present themselves.
“Our new COOs are a fundamental part of making that happen.”