Smith Brothers marks new chapter of growth with appointment of MD

High voltage electrical engineering firm Smith Brothers has expanded its board of directors with the appointment of Nick Gudgeon, as it looks to further its stake in the independent connections provider (ICP) market.

Founded in 1999 by brothers Richard and John Smith, the West Yorkshire power contractor has grown significantly within the renewables, commercial and industrial connections markets in recent years – sustaining its £26m turnover this year end (July 2017).

And with sights set on £40m turnover for the 2017-18 period Nick’s appointment is set to help facilitate further expansion for the firm. With more than 20 years’ experience in the electricity supply industry, he joins as the power contractor’s new managing director, with founders Richard and John moving into the roles of joint chairmen.

Previously director of project management and engineering at renewables giant Lightsource, Nick brings with him a wealth of technical, operational and strategic knowledge. His strong background additionally includes consultancy and managerial roles with such industry-renowned names as Fichtner Consulting Engineers and Nordex UK where he oversaw wind, solar, biomass and waste to energy connections throughout the UK.

In his new role Nick will be responsible for the overall development of the business, working to build and maintain robust relationships and helping to further cement Smith Brothers’ presence as the UK’s go-to ICP.

Commenting on Nick’s appointment, John Smith said: “Nick joining as MD comes at an excellent time for the business. After a year of consolidation and with plans to achieve a 50% uplift in sales in the year ahead, the firm is ready to enter a new chapter of growth.

“We were never going to hand over the reins to someone we didn’t know or trust to take the business on the path we set it on, and Richard and I will still be overseeing things on-site from our roles as chairmen. However, having worked with Nick on a number of projects over the past few years, we are confident that with his vast managerial and technical experience – not to mention an excellent team alongside him – he is the right person to take the company forward.”

In addition to his technical expertise, Nick has built excellent links throughout his career with funders, DNOs, ICPs and the supply chain and developer community, which will prove invaluable to Smith Brothers’ ongoing market progression. He also resides on several high-profile panels, regularly engaging with Energy Networks Association, OFGEM, UK DNOs, Lloyds and trade association members.

“I’m looking forward to the opportunity this role presents to help Smith Brothers advance even further,” said Nick. “Having worked with the team over the past three years, I’ve seen how much they’ve grown in that short amount of time and I know that by sharpening up certain aspects, there’s no reason we can’t continue to surpass expectations moving forwards.

“Developing strong relationships is at the heart of any successful business and I’ll be focusing on building these with clients old and new, small works customers in the industrial and utility sectors and – of course – the whole of the Smith Brothers team. It’s a promising time for the ICP market, so a key priority for us will be to further cement our presence within it.”