Smith Brothers makes new hires in preparation for coming year of growth

Dan Wagner, John Benson (both pictured) and Michael McLaughlin have bolstered the ranks of Smith Brothers senior team as it prepares for further growth over the coming year. Image: Smith Brothers.

Electrical contractor Smith Brothers has made a trio of senior appointments across its high voltage and operations departments in an effort to prepare for a period of further growth following the success of the previous year.

John Benson has joined as head of extra high voltage projects, a newly created role that will task him with overseeing Smith Brothers’ contracts of 66kV and above. He brings more than 30 years’ industry experience from companies including Siemens, infrastructure services company Freedom and utility Anglian Water.  

In a sign of Smith Brothers’ intentions for the Irish market, Michael McLaughlin has been hired as head of operations for Ireland. The contractor says he will bring 40 years of industry experience across a range of sectors, including renewables, following years spent at the likes of infrastructure firms Morgan Sindall and Balfour Beatty.

Finally, Dan Wagner has been promoted to operations manager having joined the company as senior project manager in spring 2016. Wagner had over a decade of experience at distribution network operator (DNO) Electricity North West followed by another two years at Northern Powergrid before joining Smith Brothers.

The appointments follow what Smith Brothers has called an “impressive year” for its business. It recorded sustained £27 million turnover levels and improved profit margins over the 2016-17 accounting period and, according to finance director Richard King, this is set to continue over the next year.

“The past 12 months have been about consolidation. We’ve strengthened our internal processes and procedures, boosted operational efficiencies, invested in more great new people, and relocated to new 10,000 square feet offices with room for expansion – all whilst maintaining performance levels,” he said.

“Now, we’re geared up for the next chapter of growth, with our forward order book already projecting turnover of £40 million for the year ahead. This 50% uplift is something we’re more than ready for, given the efforts we’ve put in over the past 12 months to take our business to the next level. These appointments are a crucial part of that story.”