UAE's Arabtec names acting group CEO as Hamish Tyrwhitt steps down

Tyrwhitt's exit announced as Arabtec posts 16% YoY revenue decline in Q1'19, with net profit down 50% during the period

Hamish Tyrwhitt was group CEO of Arabtec Holding.
© ITP Media Group / Rajesh Raghav
Hamish Tyrwhitt was group CEO of Arabtec Holding.

The group chief executive officer of Dubai Financial Market-listed Arabtec Holding, Hamish Tyrwhitt, has stepped down from his position at the company, with Peter Pollard, currently the builder's group chief financial officer, named acting GCEO, the contractor confirmed in a bourse statement. 

Pollard, who has 30 years' experience in the construction industry, joined Arabtec Holding in April 2017. 

Tyrwhitt's departure comes after Depa confirmed in March 2019 that he would step down as the interiors company's group CEO from 1 May, 2019.

A well-known industry figure, Tyrwhitt was appointed as CEO of Arabtec Holding in November 2016, months after he joined as group CEO of Depa in April 2016.

Prior to joining Depa, Tyrwhitt spent 27 years with Leighton Holdings. During this tenure, he held various senior positions, including CEO from 2011 to 2014. In March 2015, he became CEO of Asia Resources Minerals, an Indonesian coal mining company listed in the UK.

Commenting on Tyrwhitt's exit, Arabtec's board of directors said in a statement: “We would like to take this opportunity to thank Hamish for his efforts and we look forward to supporting Peter in his role as acting GCEO.

“Peter has been instrumental in driving the company forward, in line with the group’s strategic priorities. Peter will continue to focus on aligning our business with the UAE’s national agenda, productivity, efficiency and innovation being key drivers in positioning Arabtec as a competitive business, and developing the future Emirati leaders who joined the group during 2018.”

Tyrwhitt's departure and Pollard's appointment were announced after Arabtec Holding posted a net profit attributable to parent of $8.6m (AED31.8m) in Q1 2019, a year-on-year decline of 50% from Q1 2018's figure of $17.3m (AED63.6m).

The company's Q1 2019 revenue of $544.4m (AED2bn) was 16% lower than Q1 2018's value of $653.3m (AED2.4bn). 

Arabtec's backlog as of Q1 2019 was valued at $4bn (AED14.8bn), with the group stating that it "experienced a contraction in margins year on year, attributable to lower revenue from a slowdown in awards in the construction sector, coupled with a number of legacy projects closing out in the coming months". 

In a bourse missive announcing Arabtec's Q1 2019 financials, Pollard said: “We remain confident that, with the strong pipeline of opportunities across our addressable markets, we will see more awards in the coming quarters across the construction and industrial sectors.

“We continue to focus selectively on countries that offer a strong, sustainable pipeline of construction, infrastructure, and industrial opportunities including the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, and Egypt.”

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