Galliford Try’s Greg Fitzgerald has steered the firm through years of mergers and growth, culminating in last’s year’s acquisition of Miller Construction - and all while earning the respect of his peers and colleagues along the way
Greg Fitzgerald, CEO and acting chairman of Galliford Try, impressed the judges for having steered the company from a sub-£100m market cap business to the £1.75bn FTSE 250 giant it is today. The transformation was underpinned last year when Fitzgerald spearheaded the company’s acquisition of Miller Construction, a fitting cap to a career that has seen Fitzgerald win a deserved reputation both as one of the industry’s most determined leaders, and as one of its most respected characters.
Fitzgerald, who has been with the firm for 34 years, was appointed to the board in July 2003, initially as MD of the housebuilding division. He was appointed CEO in July 2005 and then executive chairman on 21 October 2014. Prior to this, he was a founder of Midas Homes in 1992 and its MD when it was acquired in 1997, subsequently chairing Midas Homes and Gerald Wood Homes. He is also a non-executive director of the National House Building Council.
Fitzgerald is due to retire from his executive position later this year, after leading contractor and housebuilder Galliford Try for a decade. Judge and Building Value director Tony Williams paid his own tribute: “Growth, mergers and pleasantness have all been part of his modus operandi. How often does that work?”
The announcement that Fitzgerald is to step down came as the contractor and housebuilder reported its results for the years to 30 June 2014, with group revenue rising 21% to £1.77bn and pre-tax profit up 28% to £95.2m. “If ever an award is deserved for added timeliness, this is one,” said the judges.