Balfour Beatty’s demoted UK construction boss Mike Peasland is to leave the company by the end of the year

Mike Peasland

Source: David Levene

Balfour Beatty confirmed this week that Peasland, who was replaced as chief executive of Balfour Beatty’s UK construction business on Monday (29 April), will leave the firm by the end of the year.

Balfour Beatty said the decision was made prior to the internal review of the UK construction business, which led to a £50m profit warning and Balfour Beatty Group chief executive Andrew McNaughton taking direct charge of the UK construction business this week.

McNaughton is expected to remain in the dual role of group chief executive and UK construction chief executive until the end of the year, when a new management team for Construction Services UK (CSUK) is expected to be in place.

The review, the results of which were announced on Monday, saw Peasland demoted from his role as chief executive to managing director of the £1.25bn turnover regional division of the CSUK, where Balfour Beatty said the majority of the £50m profit shortfall is located.

Duncan McGrath, Balfour Beatty chief financial officer, told analysts this week that around 75% - or £37.5m - of the £50m downgrade was located in the regional business and concerned around 100 problem projects.

The remainder - around £12.5m - is in the building section of the major projects business. He said that across all the problem projects only one had had an impact of more than £3m, with the “vast majority” below £1m and “about 5” between £1m and £3m.

McNaughton said Peasland had been asked to step down into the regional role due to his “extensive experience in running a regional construction business”.

A Balfour Beatty spokeswoman said that McNaughton and Peasland would work together over the coming months to “to develop a transition plan for the leadership of CSUK which we expect to be concluded by the end of the year”.

Peasland’s exit will follow that of Balfour Beatty regional managing director Steve Waite, who departs with immediate effect following the review of the business this week.

Bob Clark, managing director of the major projects division, remains in his role.

Peasland joined Balfour Beatty in Scotland in 1970, where he worked on civil engineering projects before joining the contractor’s fledgling building business, where he rose to become the general manager in Scotland. He has held the posts of managing director of Balfour Kilpatrick, now Balfour Beatty Engineering Services, and managing director of Mansell, which Balfour Beatty acquired in 2003.