In a move that consolidates Vivalda Group plc as the UK’s largest independent supplier of architectural facades, the business has appointed former SIG plc divisional managing director Chris Williams as a non-executive director.

A senior industry figure with more than 25 years’ experience in the building products sector, Williams has unrivalled experience working with blue chip companies in the fields of both manufacturing and distribution. Key category expertise includes fire protection, building boards, roofing, facades, cladding and plumbing.

Williams’ most recent role within SIG was as managing director of its buildings solutions division, which included the industrial cladding business Steadmans and facades business Proteus. During this time, he instigated the turnaround at Steadmans, transforming a single site operation into a multi-site, multi-brand success through both organic and acquisitive growth, including a £10m new factory development. A fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and an alumnus of the London Business School, Williams demonstrates all the characteristics that Vivalda’s chairman Peter Johnson was looking for in a new board member.

Commenting on the appointment, Peter Johnson said: “The next five years will be crucial to the development of the Vivalda Group as we expand the business using both organic and acquisitive growth strategies. My colleague, managing director Ben Jayes, and I have been leading Vivalda for well over 20 years and appreciate the need to harness new ideas and energies from outside the company. Chris fulfils that need perfectly as we embark on an exciting time for Vivalda”.

“Chris is highly respected within the building products sector and brings invaluable experience from a major plc group. He also has proven marketing ability which he brings to Vivalda as it embarks on a period of significant growth.  His presence lays down a marker in our confidence that over the next three years turnover will increase considerably above its current level of £34m.”

A strong advocate of improvements in cladding product specification, whole system testing and consistent in-building product performance testing, Vivalda Group has also pioneered the adoption of off-site fabrication within the facades sector.

Johnson concludes: “Looking ahead, we have a number of projects focusing on issues such as training and skills that will have a fundamental impact on the efficiency and safety within the facades sector. Part of Chris’s role will be to assess the viability of these projects and bring them to fruition.”

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