John McManus takes the reins after Peter Drummond steps down after almost a decade

John McManus

John McManus

Architect BDP has appointed John McManus as its new chief executive after Peter Drummond stepped down from the role.

The role is re-elected by BDP’s board of directors every two years and Drummond, who has been in the post since October 2004, “made the decision to pass the baton on, and not seek re-election”, the firm said.

Glasgow-based McManus, an architect who studied at the Mackintosh School of Architecture and joined BDP in 1985, will take up the role on 1 January.

He will become the first architect BDP has had in the post of chief executive.

He currently leads the Glasgow studio and has led design teams on major commissions within all of BDP’s key sectors both in the UK and internationally.

Drummond, who has overseen the transformation of BDP from a UK-based practice to a global firm with six international studios and current projects in 37 countries, will become chairman of BDP’s south region, taking overall responsibility for the London and Bristol studios.

However, in its latest published accounts, for the year to 30 June 2012, BDP’s profit fell by 44% as school and healthcare projects dried up.

The firm reported a profit of £1.5m over the period down from £2.8m the year before.

It also saw a fall in revenue of 15% to £67.6m in 2011-12 from £79.7m in 2010-11.

However, in September, BDP’s finance director Heather Wells told Building the firm was seeing growth again, with both its London and Glasgow offices very busy.

Chairman David Cash said: “As we see the first encouraging signs of returning confidence in the marketplace, these moves are designed to place BDP in a strong position for the future. I wish both John and Peter every success in their new roles.”