Commercial property builder Willmott Dixon targets housing market

November 28, 2011

Construction group Willmott Dixon is increasing its activity in the residential property market activity across the South West to a bid to combat reduced expenditure on public sector projects.

The group, which traditionally has been a major player in the public sector and commercial construction markets, has appointed James Coombs as operations manager to spearhead its move into the housing market and develop operations across the private and affordable residential, student accommodation and care markets.

The group, which has a regional office in Bristol, is the country’s second-largest privately-owned contractor and in 2010 made pre-tax profits of £26.6m on a turnover of £989.5m. It has a forward order book worth more than £1bn.

James began his career with Balfour Beatty, joining as a graduate engineer and subsequently being promoted to site manager. In 2001 he moved to Opco Construction as project manager and was later appointed operations director with responsibility for residential and commercial projects across the country.

Immediately prior to taking up his position at Willmott Dixon he ran his own specialist residential property business.

Willmott Dixon South West & Wales managing director Neal Stephens said: “This is a key strategic appointment for the company. Both locally and within the wider Willmott Dixon group we have extensive experience of the residential sector and seek to capitalise on this to enable us to balance our portfolio correctly to allow continued growth even in the current climate.”


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