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Cavanna Homes appoints two construction industry leaders to non-Executive Director roles

Two leading figures in UK construction have been appointed as non-Executive Directors to the board of family-owned Westcountry homebuilder Cavanna Homes, to help guide the firm’s growth into its second century of trading.

John Lougher, who steps down from his role as Strategic Land Managing Director for Vistry Group later this year, and Stephen Trusler whose career in housebuilding includes senior roles with Lovell Partnerships, Wates Group and Laing O’Rourke, will support Cavanna Homes’ Managing Director Keith Miller and Finance Director Scott Murray to grow the business in tune with the family ethos.

John and Stephen have also held non-Executive Director positions with housing associations; John with the Guinness Partnership and Stephen with Aster Group.  Both will be seeking to establish stronger partnerships on behalf of Cavanna Homes with industry contacts, including the larger housing associations.

John explains:

The South West is a crowded market place where all of the national homebuilders have regional offices. Cavanna Homes can distinguish itself through its legacy, the strength of its brand and the quality of its product. This is an exciting time for the company.

Stephen added:

The ambition is to drive controlled growth beyond the company’s centenary year in a way that respects the family’s legacy, follows their ethos and maintains the highest standards.

Next year marks 100 years since PD Cavanna founded the family homebuilding business, which still has its headquarters in Torquay.

Twelve years ago, third generation family members Jeremy Cavanna, his brother Jonathan and their cousin Martin, embarked on a succession plan in which non-family directors have been appointed to senior management and operational posts.

Chairman Jeremy Cavanna introduced the new non-executive directors to Cavanna Homes’ 113 staff in January explaining that their roles are to encourage and scrutinise business operations and represent the family’s interests. Jeremy Cavanna said: “As we transition from an owner-managed company to one that is run by non-family professionals, we are putting in place a strong and effective non-executive team who are committed to working with the family as we look beyond our centenary year.

“This framework also provides the opportunity, rather than the obligation, for fourth generation family members to progress into director roles, should they wish to do so.”

Managing Director Keith Miller who joined Cavanna Homes in 2018 said:

With the appointment of these two exceptional non-executive directors, we have the right structure in place to drive growth, improve profitability and support the family though this important transition.

Despite the challenging market, in 2021 the firm produced a turnover of £60 million and secured 162 open market and 45 affordable completions, which provided much-needed housing for local people and families.

This year, the firm will be expanding its South West footprint with new land secured in Somerset and Dorset, as well as bringing forward new home developments in Exeter and Paignton in Devon and Bude in North Cornwall.

Cavanna Homes is currently building in Hemyock near Cullompton, Exeter, Newton Abbot, Tavistock, Holsworthy and Bude.

As part of its commitment to nurturing up-and-coming talent in the construction industry, the firm has welcomed its 2022 intake of apprentices, as well as taking part in the government’s Kickstart Scheme supporting young adults to gain valuable work experience to help build a successful start to their careers.

Cavanna Homes is proud to have raised over £30,000 for Children’s Hospice South West (CHSW) as its Charity of the Year since 2019. Following a vote by employees, Cavanna Homes will continue supporting CHSW until the end of 2023.