In October 2000 Wates Group, the construction and housebuilding group, broke with 100-years of tradition and appointed its first non-Wates family member as chief executive. Struan Robertson, formerly of BP Amoco, replaced Sir Christopher Wates, who retired from active involvement from the group. The London-based group has recently been involved in a number of high-profile projects, including the redevelopment of the Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace and a £6.5m refurbishment of Trinity College of Music’s King Charles Building. It also refurbished the ground floor of Reuters’ Fleet Street HQ, adding a juice bar for thirsty journalists. Wates Group has driven up profits 63% a year, from £2.7m in 1996 to £11.8m in 1999, when sales reached £424.5m.
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