Ex-Wates veteran Dave Smith heads over to UK’s biggest contractor after just 18 months at London firm

Dave Smith

Balfour Beatty has nabbed Dave Smith from smaller rival McLaren to head up its regional construction business in the South of England.

Smith joins after 18 months at the east-London based contractor, which is working on a £35m scheme (pictured) to turn the former home of the Guardian newspaper on London’s Farringdon Road into a 180-bed hotel, offices and retail.

Smith spent over 30 years at Wates and only joined McLaren last April as its construction managing director with his move being hailed by McLaren chairman Kevin Taylor as “taking us to the next level”.

Balfour’s UK construction boss Dean Banks said the firm will “utilise [Smith’s] expert capability and deep specialist knowledge to drive future profitable growth in the region”.

Schemes Balfour Beatty is working on in the south include a £19m extension for Bristol university and a £170m upgrade of baggage handling facilities at Heathrow Airport.