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New face will lead engineering team

Birmingham-based engineering firm adi Group has made a key senior appointment to help spearhead continued growth as it celebrates its 30th birthday this year.

Mike Smith, whose experience includes eight years at BAE Systems and over 20 years running international engineering and manufacturing companies, takes on a wide-ranging brief as the new chief operating officer.

He will ensure high quality delivery and productivity continue to be enhanced as the firm anticipates further expansion, having grown at a rate far outstripping that of the broader engineering industry in recent years.

The 55-year-old explained: “We have real ambitions and I’ve walked into a wonderful ‘right first time’ culture fostered by those who came before me. So, while I’ll focus on business development and further operational improvements with our 15 managing directors, I’ll also concentrate on maintaining our cultural DNA. I’m aiming to be the cement between the bricks, so to speak. It’s really an enabling brief.”

He described the challenges involved in his new role at the multi-disciplinary firm, saying: “We deliver quality engineering services to a number of market sectors and specialise in more than 30 different high skill disciplines. Our aim has always been to create a one-stop-shop for engineering and our growth trajectory has been steep.

“We’re looking to accelerate that growth but many companies can experience difficulties as they expand, so my task is to guard against that and ensure we work as effectively as a £200 million business and beyond, as we did when we were turning over £50 million.”

Mike takes over from interim COO, Alan Lusty, who founded adi Group back in 1990 and remains its CEO some 30 years later.

“This is a pivotal appointment for adi, as we celebrate our 30th anniversary and look to push on,” Alan said. “Securing the services of a man of Mike’s calibre and experience will help us in that endeavour. Sustained growth can be tricky to navigate but Mike has already shared with us some great insights into how we can plot a course dead ahead. The whole place is galvanised and the future’s looking bright.”

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