Strategy & Operations » Leadership & Management » Martin is new Wolseley CEO role while Nicholls exits Cobham to be CFO

INTERNATIONAL plumbing and heating company Wolseley has appointed a new CFO and chief executive.

John Martin, the firm’s CFO since 2010, has been confirmed to replace CEO Ian Meakins, who has now retired.

Martin has an extensive track record as CFO, previously working for financial services group Travelex and international recruiting outfit, Hays.

The new CEO may move the firm’s tax residency back to the UK from Switzerland, but chairman Gareth Davis has said that this will not be one of Martin’s “immediate priorities.” Former CEO Meakins moved Wolseley’s tax affairs to Switzerland in 2010 in an attempt to cut costs.

Gareth Davis, Wolseley chairman, said: “I am delighted that John will step up to the CEO role,” said Davis.

“He has a great track record both during his time at Wolseley but also in his previous Executive career. His broad international experience and strong leadership capabilities will ensure that Wolseley continues to drive improved operational performance and capitalise on the significant opportunities to generate profitable growth.”

Taking the reins from Martin as CFO is Simon Nicholls, current financial officer of technology and services group Cobham. Before joining Cobham, he was group finance director at engineering solutions provider Senior between 2008 and 2012. Prior to that, Simon spent nine years at building materials company Hanson in a number of financial roles before he became CFO for Hanson North America in 2003.

“I am delighted that Simon will be joining the company and we were pleased to have been able to attract someone of his calibre and expertise,” continued Davis. “I am confident Simon’s operational skills and experience will make a significant contribution to the future development of Wolseley.”


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