Rolls-Royce announces today that Simon Kirby has been appointed as Chief Operating Officer (COO). Simon will join Rolls-Royce in the coming months, reporting to Chief Executive Warren East. We previously announced that we would be appointing a COO in 2016 and began the search earlier this year. The new position has been created to drive operational and financial performance across the business and to take responsibility for delivering the Group-wide transformation agenda.
Simon Kirby is currently Chief Executive of HS2 Ltd, the company responsible for planning and delivery of the UK's new high speed rail network, which is Europe's largest infrastructure project. He joined HS2 Ltd in May 2014 having previously been on the Board of Network Rail as Managing Director of their Infrastructure Projects business, responsible for the delivery of all enhancement and renewal programmes. Prior to this, Simon held various positions in the Defence industry within VSEL, GEC Marconi and BAE Systems.
Warren East said: "I am delighted that Simon Kirby will be joining Rolls-Royce. His exceptional track record in delivering complex major programmes is highly relevant to Rolls-Royce and will strengthen management capability ahead of a period of significant expansion.
We are doubling our production of large civil aircraft engines and substantially growing our nuclear division while at the same time driving a transformation programme that will make us a more resilient and cash generative business. Achieving operational excellence across the Group is essential and Simon has a critical role to play. I am looking forward to working closely with him."
Simon Kirby said: "I am hugely proud to be joining one of the world's great engineering companies at an exciting time in its development. Rolls-Royce has built strong positions in global markets and has exceptional prospects for profitable growth. The ability to deliver major programmes on time and to budget is essential, and I am looking forward to bringing my experience to bear on these complex challenges and to leading the current programme of industrial transformation."
In addition to his duties on HS2, Simon is a director of the Major Projects Association and the National Skills Academy for Railway Engineering. He is also a Fellow of the Institute of Civil Engineers (FICE), Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (FRICS) and the Association of Project Management (APM).