Bovis’ commercial director and the managing director of Costain’s building division depart

Contractors Bovis Lend Lease and Costain both parted company this week with more senior management.

Bovis informed staff that Mike Howes, its commercial director, was leaving after almost 20 years. Mark Gordon, the managing director of Costain’s £250m building division has also left.

Howes is the third director to leave Bovis in as many months. The other two were Jason Millett, its UK chief executive, and Andrew Silverbeck, its global finance director.

A spokesperson for Bovis said that Howes, who was based in the firm’s head office at Harrow, north-west London, was leaving “to pursue other interests”. Howes does not leave until December but sources close to the firm said he had this week taken a step back from the business.

Howes was unavailable for comment.

A spokesperson for Costain said that Gordon had left the company “by mutual consent”. His departure follows that of former finance director Charles McCole, who left in January to “pursue new opportunities”.

Commercial director Mike Howes is leaving to pursue other interests

Bovis spokesman

The change at Bovis is part of a wider shake-up that has occurred since Australian Bob Johnston took over as global chief executive last year.

Millett left after clashing with Johnston over the a decision to split the UK into construction and PFI divisions. He drafted in Murray Coleman, the former head of Bovis’ Asia Pacific region, to take charge of the UK business.

Both companies have recently posted mediocre results. Profit at Bovis dropped 4% to £54m in the year ending June. This included a £14m writedown on the BBC’s Broadcasting House project in London and the £80m Bridgewater Place tower in Leeds.

Costain fared even worse after announcing two weeks ago that it had made a £21m loss in the first half of the year to 30 June, after writedowns on building contracts. The losses occurred despite a 26% increase in turnover to £436m.

Replacements for Howes and Gordon have been made. Bovis has promoted Paul Johnson, who has been at the company for 28 years, to the newly created position of commercial director and head of risk in the UK.

At Costain Gordon has been replaced by Alan Kay, who is in his late forties and has worked at the company since graduating.