BES marks 20 years in business with appointment of new CEO

Date published: 24 February 2022

Rochdale-based BES, the specialist in delivering cGMP compliant facilities for the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, life sciences and healthcare industries, is to appoint Zeb Ahmed to the new role of CEO, as part of a suite of leadership changes.

Marking the company’s 20th year in business, the changes are designed to support continued profitable growth as BES takes on increasingly complex and fast-track process engineering-led projects.

Former deputy managing director of Bouygues Energies & Services Contracting UK, Zeb has already joined BES as managing director designate, beginning the transition to the new leadership structure from 4 January 2022. He will become CEO on 1 July, taking on day-to-day responsibility for running the company and delivering its commercial strategy.

A Chartered European Process Engineer and Oxford University Alumnus, with triple fellowship of the Institute of Chemical Engineers, Energy Institute, and Institute of Directors, Zeb previously worked with several of BES’s existing leadership team in the 1990s.

His process engineering background complements the turnkey service offering of the BES business, and the existing relationship between BES’s current board members and the new CEO will enable a smooth transition.

Founding director and incumbent managing director, Steve Marsh, will move to the role of chairman from 1 July, retaining strategic and financial oversight for steering the business through the next phase in its development.

Engineering director and founding board member, Paul Marsh, will become COO of BES when the new leadership structure takes effect in July.

With a formidable track record of leading projects, Paul’s expertise will be instrumental in ensuring BES’s multidisciplinary team delivers consistently high standards and efficient programme delivery. He will also be responsible for maximising the value of digital design, engineering and construction technologies for BES and its clients.

Based in Rochdale and Milton Keynes, BES works collaboratively with innovative start-ups, SME and blue-chip clients and in partnership with main contractors. It offers turnkey consultancy, engineering, design, and construction for technically complex, controlled environments, including cleanrooms, laboratories, manufacturing and processing facilities.

Founded in 2002, the company has grown to a £100 million turnover business with a team of 180 professionals. It acquired specialist partitioning system company, Norwood, in 2017.

Steve Marsh commented: “Since BES was first established in 2002, we have always focused on understanding the client’s requirements and delivering an integrated, multidisciplinary approach, providing turnkey project lifecycle services and solutions. Our commitment to nurturing talent, working collaboratively and focusing on achieving optimised outcomes for every project have enabled us to develop long-standing client relationships and a reputation as a leading player in our field.

“After 20 years of success, the company is well-positioned to achieve our vision of becoming the leading and largest multi-disciplinary specialist in the cGMP facility consultancy, design and delivery sector. The changes to our board and the addition of Zeb to our leadership team will enable us to do that.”

Zeb Ahmed adds: “BES was founded with the spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship and has retained that culture for 20 years. I am joining the company at an exciting time in its continued journey of success, with the potential to develop closer strategic relationships with our world-class client base.

“With single-point accountability delivered through BES’s industry-leading in-house capabilities, we have an opportunity to further strengthen our position as one of the UK's leading integrated, process engineering-led, multidisciplinary engineering cGMP facility solution providers. I am looking forward to taking a central role in enabling the business to capitalise on that opportunity, working collaboratively alongside Paul and Steve.”

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