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17 May 2010

David MacBrayne Ltd Appoint New Chief Executive

David MacBrayne Ltd, the parent company of ferry operators Caledonian MacBrayne (CalMac) and NorthLink Ferries Ltd (NFL) has announced the appointment of Mr Archie Robertson OBE as its new Chief Executive.

Mr Robertson, (56), is a former Chief Executive of the Highways Agency, which is responsible for England’s vital trunk road arteries. Prior to that he was Operations Director at the Environment Agency of England and Wales.

These posts followed a 20-year-career with BP across the world including Singapore, New Zealand, Rotterdam and Brussels.

He spent his early years on Skye, and still has strong family connections there.

He will take over from David MacBrayne’s Chief Executive Lawrie Sinclair, who is retiring after 10 years at the end of June. Mr Robertson is due to start on June 1st, to allow a short handover period.

David MacBrayne Chairman Peter Timms said:

“The Board is delighted to have Archie on board. He brings a wealth of highly relevant expertise from one of the the biggest jobs in transportation in the UK where he managed a budget of £6 billion, and has transport experience ranging from oil shipping, and rail projects such as London’s Crossrail, as well as national roads. In the Highways Agency his drive to make it a customer focused organisation received many plaudits, and this ties in well with CalMac and NorthLink’s desire to put customers first and provide the best ferry services possible.

“In addition, he has local roots, and a strong empathy for the challenges facing rural communities and an understanding of the importance of lifeline ferry services.”

Mr Robertson said:

“David MacBrayne is a name I grew up with on Skye, and I am really excited to be joining an organisation with such a rich community heritage stretching back more than 150 years. I am greatly looking forward to playing a part in the next important chapter of its development with NorthLink’s Northern Isles contract due for re-tender soon and the CalMac contract for the Clyde and Hebrides services up for grabs the following year.”

Stewart Stevenson, Transport Minister, said:

"David MacBrayne Ltd plays a crucial role in providing lifeline ferry services to island and remote mainland communities in the Clyde and Hebrides and the Northern Isles. This post requires an understanding of the issues which affect the social and economic life of the Highlands and Islands.

“Lawrie Sinclair has been a dedicated chief executive over the past 10 years and Archie Robertson’s wide experience of transport issues and his Highlands connections will ensure this good work continues bringing to the post the skills and knowledge which will benefit both passengers and business.”

Stewart Stevenson
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