Watkin Jones plc

CEO succession

RNS Number : 8054B
Watkin Jones plc
15 January 2018

For immediate release

15 January 2018



Watkin Jones plc

('Watkin Jones' or the 'Group')


CEO succession


Watkin Jones plc (AIM:WJG), a leading UK developer and constructor of multi occupancy property assets, with a focus on the student accommodation and build to rent sectors, today announces that Mark Watkin Jones has notified the Board of his intention to stand down as the Group's Chief Executive Officer once a suitable successor has been appointed, following an orderly handover period.  For personal reasons, Mark is not able to undertake a full time executive role over the longer term and he and the Board believe that it is in the Group's best interests to recruit a successor.


The Board will initiate a formal search process to identify a new Chief Executive Officer and a succession timetable will be announced once this process has been concluded.  The Board is keen to retain the benefit of Mark's valuable knowledge and experience and the intention is that, following the transition, the Board will look at how this might be achieved, including the option of him becoming a Non-Executive Director of Watkin Jones.


Under Mark's leadership, Watkin Jones has gone through a transformational period, a key part of which has been the establishment and development of a strong senior management team capable of supporting the Group's long-term growth aspirations.  The Board will be seeking a successor to Mark who can build on this platform and maintain the Group's track record of profitable, cash generative growth.


Mark Watkin Jones, Chief Executive Officer of Watkin Jones plc, said: "After careful consideration I have decided that it is necessary for me to step back from my position as Chief Executive Officer.  The Group has reported record results today and with excellent earnings visibility, Watkin Jones is in a strong position to achieve continued success in both student accommodation and build to rent.  Solid foundations are in place for my successor to work with, including an excellent management team that has supported me over the years in successfully growing the business and who will continue to drive Watkin Jones forward for the long-term benefit of our shareholders."


Grenville Turner, Non-Executive Chairman of Watkin Jones plc, said: "After 15 successful years at the helm, the Board understands Mark's desire to relinquish the CEO position and the associated demands of this role.  Mark has played a pivotal part in shaping the Watkin Jones strategy and success and has built an experienced and stable leadership team who have increasingly taken on the day-to-day responsibility for the running of the business.  The Board would like to thank Mark for his enormous contribution and is also delighted that he has indicated his willingness to continue to support his successor and the business going forward.  The search for a successor will commence immediately and we will make a further announcement upon completion of the formal search process."


- Ends -


For further information:

Watkin Jones plc

Mark Watkin Jones, Chief Executive Officer

Tel: +44 (0) 1248 362 516                   

Phil Byrom, Chief Financial Officer


Peel Hunt LLP (Nominated Adviser & Joint Corporate Broker)

        Tel: +44 (0) 20 7418 8900

Mike Bell / Justin Jones / Matthew Brooke-Hitching


Jefferies Hoare Govett (Joint Corporate Broker)

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7029 8000

Max Jones / Will Souter



Media enquiries:


Henry Harrison-Topham / Richard Oldworth

Jamie Hooper / Steph Watson


Tel: +44 (0) 20 7466 5000                 

[email protected]



Notes to Editors


Watkin Jones is a leading UK developer and constructor of multi occupancy property assets, with a focus on the student accommodation and build to rent sectors.  The Group has strong relationships with institutional investors, and a reputation for successful, on-time-delivery of high quality developments.  Since 1999, Watkin Jones has delivered more than 34,500 student beds across 107 sites.  In addition, Fresh Property Group, the Group's specialist accommodation management company, manages more than 16,000 student beds on behalf of its institutional clients.  Watkin Jones has also been responsible for over 50 residential developments, ranging from starter homes to executive housing and apartments.  The Group is now expanding its development and management operations into the build to rent sector.


The Group's competitive advantage lies in its experienced management team and business model, which enables it to offer an end-to-end solution for investors, delivered entirely in-house with minimal reliance on third parties, across the entire life cycle of an asset.


Watkin Jones was admitted to trading on AIM in March 2016 with the ticker WJG.L.  For additional information please visit: www.watkinjonesplc.com 


This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange