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Austal to make CEO transition

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Patrick Gregg (left) and David Singleton standing in front of a Guardian-class patrol boat at Austal's Australian shipyard in Henderson, Western Australia. [Image: Austal]

Chief Operating Officer Patrick Gregg is to be promoted to the position of Chief Executive Officer at shipbuilder Austal (ASX:ASB) effective January 1, 2021, following a six month transition from current Managing Director and CEO David Singleton.

Singleton will have completed nine years as a director including five years as CEO when he completes his term with Austal at the end of this calendar year. He will continue to work closely with Gregg for the next six months to ensure an efficient handover.

Austal Chairman John Rothwell said that Gregg had been appointed as COO three and a half years ago with a view to his being a natural successor for the CEO role in the future. Prior to joining Austal, Gregg had extensive project management, manufacturing and business experience including at BAE Systems where he was Project Director for the second of class Hunter killer nuclear submarine build.

Since Gregg’s appointment, Austal has set up operations in Vietnam, expanded its operations in the Philippines and won a new Cape class contract with the Australian Government.

“Our shipyards in Australia, the Philippines, Vietnam and China are working incredibly efficiently while producing quality defense and commercial vessels,” said Rothwell. “That is a reflection of Paddy’s drive, commitment and ability to engender similar characteristics from his employees. Those skills and personal qualities made him an ideal choice to take over from David at the end of the year.”

“Paddy already possesses a good working relationship with Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle and I have no doubt that will continue,” added Rothwell. “I would also like to thank David for his contribution to Austal over almost five years as CEO, and before that as a Non-Executive Director, and wish him all the best for the future.”

“Working as COO at Austal has provided me with an in-depth understanding of the opportunities and challenges that Austal faces,” said Gregg. “Working with Craig Perciavalle, CFO Greg Jason and the rest of Austal’s executive team, I will be focused on ensuring Austal continues to drive value for our shareholders.”

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